It’s all in the genes: The mutational landscape of acute myeloid leukemia in dogs

Sample Type: Blood Sample, DNA Sample
Study Location: Cornell University
CHF-funded Grant: 02987

New treatments have been developed for people with acute myeloid leukemia, patients live longer with the disease than they used to (most people usually died from the disease within 3 years of diagnosis), and the disease can be more accurately divided into subtypes, which provide better information on treatment and prognosis. In fact, treatments are often tailored to the specific subtype of leukemia in the patient, which is now called precision medicine. All of these improvements in the diagnosis, treatment and prognostication of acute myeloid leukemia in humans have been made possible by genetic testing and identification of specific genetic defects or mutations that are responsible for the tumor.

However, unlike humans, we know very little about the genetic mutations that underlie acute myeloid leukemia in dogs, which is the goal of this study. In a multi-institutional study involving blood cancer specialists in veterinary and human medicine, we will perform in-depth genetic analysis of 50 dogs with acute myeloid leukemia by sequencing the genes within the tumor. Relevant genetic mutations will be identified by comparing gene sequences of the cancer cells to those of normal tissue, which we will retrieve from standard mouth swabs. From this genetic analysis, we hope to identify mutations in acute myeloid leukemia in dogs that would be responsive to newer treatments or that we could target for development of new drugs. We also hope to more accurately classify dogs into subtypes, which would help us better inform owners of prognosis and treat the dogs with more appropriate therapy, thereby prolonging their life, just like we have in humans.

Participation Requirements:

This is a sample-collection only study for dogs with acute leukemia. The grant will cover the cost of specific tests (such as flow cytometry) to confirm the diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia.

Owner's Responsibilities:

You will be asked to allow us to collect a small amount of additional blood and a mouth swab for DNA. There are no further obligations or responsibilities.

Other Participating Institutions:

Cornell University Veterinary Specialists in Stamford, CT, Rochester Specialist and Emergency Services, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Tennessee, and University of Georgia.

Read more about the study here:

More Information


Contact Information:

Principal Investigator: Tracy Stokol, BVSc, DACVP

Name: Clinical Trials Corrdinator
Phone: (607)-253-3060

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