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jeffb

Tasmanian devil resistance to transmissable cancer

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As you all know Tasmanian devils have been suffering from a transmissable cancer which has reduced populations by 80-90% in some areas. Epidemiological models have predicted complete extermination of the species. New results have identified genetic mutations which have resulted in resistance to the cancer. This is important because (1) it suggests the species will survive and (2) it demonstrates rapid evolution in response to a disease, and that capability may save other species as well.

 

http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms12684

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