Devils genetic sequencing sparks cancer breakthrough

9 March 2010

The first set of Tasmanian Devils’ genetic sequencing has revealed the origin of the unique transmissible cancer now devastating the devil population, offering hope that the rapid decline in devil numbers can be arrested and giving scientists new insights for cancer research.

The work was done by an international team of scientists lead by Dr Elizabeth Murchison, who conducted the research at The Australian National University in the laboratory of Professor Jenny Graves of the ANU Research School of Biology and the ARC Centre of Excellence in Kangaroo Genomics. The team made the breakthrough by studying and comparing the genes active in both healthy and sick Tasmanian Devils.


Sharyn Wragg