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The CADETSM HM assay: a powerful new approach for identification of canine histiocytic malignancy (HM)

Many dog owners may be unfamiliar with the term ‘histiocytic malignancy’, since this cancer is relatively infrequent in the general dog population. Critically, however, HM is remarkably common in certain breeds – but it can be extremely difficult to diagnose with confidence.

The CADETSM HM ASSAY is a newly developed approach that aids distinction between HM and several other, very similar cancers – giving you and your veterinarian additional confidence in selecting the most suitable treatment options.

What is histiocytic malignancy (HM)?

Histiocytic Malignancy (HM) is a typically aggressive canine cancer that can arise in a wide variety of locations, often affecting multiple sites in abdominal organs and the skin. Several breeds are highly predisposed, especially the Bernese Mountain Dog and the Flat-Coated Retriever, and also the Rottweiler and Golden Retriever; however any breed may be affected.

Diagnosis of HM can be very challenging using existing methods. Unfortunately, at the present time there are no widely effective treatments for HM, and so the long-term prognosis is generally unfavorable since the disease tends to progress rapidly.

Why is the diagnosis of HM so challenging?

The symptoms and appearance of HM are very similar to those of several other tumors (some examples are shown to the left). These often have more optimistic outcomes, especially when diagnosed at an early stage, since more effective treatments are available. The ability to distinguish HM from these other diseases is therefore critical for making the best decisions for the care of affected dogs.

The traditional approach to diagnosis of HM

The most common approach for diagnosis of HM involves taking a biopsy of the tumor mass, and examining this tissue under the microscope – but this method is often inconclusive.

More advanced microscopic methods are available, but these are expensive and often impractical, and the results can still be very difficult to interpret. This lengthy process only adds to the anxiety for owners and breeders of dogs suspected as having HM, and can delay treatment for those cases that ultimately are diagnosed with a different disease.

How does the CADETSM HM Assay aid the identification of HM?

The CADETSM HM ASSAY represents a powerful, rapid and minimally invasive approach for distinction between HM and other diseases that show similar symptoms and cellular appearance. The assay involves screening tiny samples of tumor tissue to determine how many copies of a specific DNA sequence are present. An abnormal reduction in the number of copies identified is consistent with a diagnosis of HM.

The exclusion of HM as a diagnosis offers a more positive outlook and opportunities to consider a broader variety of treatment strategies. Ultimately we hope that by providing a way to identify genuine HM cases more effectively we can help veterinarians and researchers to develop effective treatments for this disease.

What are some of the key advantages of using the CADETSM HM Assay?

  • Less subjective and expensive than traditional methods
  • Minimally invasive – does not require costly and invasive biopsy of the tumor
  • Rapid results, available in as little as two days from sample receipt by the testing laboratory
  • Validated through an intensive analysis of over 500 tumor samples and healthy tissue specimens

How do I request to have my dog tested with the CADETSM HM Assay?

The assay is available directly to veterinary professionals. If you are interested in having samples from your dog submitted for analysis, please provide your veterinarian with a copy of this information flyer (click on the image to the right to view the flyer in a new window).

Veterinarians may also click here to obtain more information on the CADETSM HM Assay.

How was the CADETSM HM Assay developed?

The CADETSM HM Assay was developed through years of research carried out by Sentinel Biomedical and our academic partners at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, in conjunction with a dedicated community of dog owners, breeders and veterinary professionals.