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Retrovirus may be causing cancer in koalas

A novel retrovirus may be the cause of high rates of lymphoma, leukemia and other cancers in koalas in northern Australia, according to a study published in Nature Communications. Researchers compared genes of cancer-stricken koalas with healthy koalas and identified koala retrovirus insertion hot spots and correlations with common koala cancers, and they will be looking for links between KoRV mutations and other koala diseases.

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