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Devil facial tumours: Towards a vaccine

Devil facial tumours: Towards a vaccine
Devil facial tumours: Towards a vaccine
The Tasmanian devil is the only mammalian species to harbour two independent lineages of contagious cancer. Devil facial tumour 1 (DFT1) emerged in the 1990s and has caused significant population declines. Devil facial tumour 2 (DFT2) was identified in 2014, and evidence indicates that this new tumour has emerged independently of DFT1. While DFT1 is widespread across Tasmania, DFT2 is currently found only on the Channel Peninsula in south east Tasmania. Allograft transmission of cancer cells should be prevented by major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules. DFT1 avoids immune detection by downregulating MHC class I expression, which can be reversed by treatment with interferon-gamma (IFNγ), while DFT2 currently circulates in hosts with a similar MHC class I genotype to the tumour. Wild Tasmanian devil numbers have not recovered from the emergence of DFT1, and it is feared that widespread transmission of DFT2 will be devastating to the remaining wild population. A preventative solution for the management of the disease is needed. Here, we review the current research on immune responses to devil facial tumours and vaccine strategies against DFT1 and outline our plans moving forward to develop a specific, effective vaccine to support the wild Tasmanian devil population against the threat of these two transmissible tumours.
0882-0139
1-18
Owen, Rachel S.
64dab7b9-99cc-4daa-8a31-36d3f1f96909
Siddle, Hannah V.
2f0c1307-55d3-4965-a8b0-495c4a799f27
Owen, Rachel S.
64dab7b9-99cc-4daa-8a31-36d3f1f96909
Siddle, Hannah V.
2f0c1307-55d3-4965-a8b0-495c4a799f27

Owen, Rachel S. and Siddle, Hannah V. (2019) Devil facial tumours: Towards a vaccine. Immunological Investigations, 1-18. (doi:10.1080/08820139.2019.1624770).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The Tasmanian devil is the only mammalian species to harbour two independent lineages of contagious cancer. Devil facial tumour 1 (DFT1) emerged in the 1990s and has caused significant population declines. Devil facial tumour 2 (DFT2) was identified in 2014, and evidence indicates that this new tumour has emerged independently of DFT1. While DFT1 is widespread across Tasmania, DFT2 is currently found only on the Channel Peninsula in south east Tasmania. Allograft transmission of cancer cells should be prevented by major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules. DFT1 avoids immune detection by downregulating MHC class I expression, which can be reversed by treatment with interferon-gamma (IFNγ), while DFT2 currently circulates in hosts with a similar MHC class I genotype to the tumour. Wild Tasmanian devil numbers have not recovered from the emergence of DFT1, and it is feared that widespread transmission of DFT2 will be devastating to the remaining wild population. A preventative solution for the management of the disease is needed. Here, we review the current research on immune responses to devil facial tumours and vaccine strategies against DFT1 and outline our plans moving forward to develop a specific, effective vaccine to support the wild Tasmanian devil population against the threat of these two transmissible tumours.

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Accepted/In Press date: 24 May 2019
Published date: 4 June 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 433070
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/433070
ISSN: 0882-0139
PURE UUID: 0cea8cee-46b5-4b2e-9dbe-edaf77db0c87
ORCID for Rachel S. Owen: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6441-2213

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Date deposited: 07 Aug 2019 16:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 04:15

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