Canine bone cancer research is getting a boost thanks to the efforts of a gene synthesis company, Gen9, a software company, Autodesk, and Auburn University. The combined effects of these three groups helped successfully manufacture a synthetic viral genome, called sCAV2. This virus, which has more than 34,000 base pairs in length, is the longest functional virus synthesized for oncology research. It is a replicate of an adenovirus that selectively targets and destroys tumor cells without killing healthy cells at the same time.
Armed with this virus, Bruce Smith, V.M.D, Ph.D, professor in the Department of Pathobiology and director of the Auburn University Research Initiative in Cancer (AURIC), will use the it in clinical trials to evaluate therapeutic treatments in dogs with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer with a survival rate of less than 10 percent. …read more