A breakthrough in cancer monitoring for dogs emerges as a team of scientists from the University of Edinburgh introduces a revolutionary DNA-based blood test.

Developed by the University’s researchers and CanCan Diagnostics, the new liquid biopsy test provides a novel method to track cancer progression in dogs. With cancer affecting up to a quarter of all dogs and even higher percentages in certain breeds, this test offers potential advancements in disease management.

CanCan Diagnostics’ Technology

CanCan Diagnostics, through its innovative technology, enables a more sensitive and expedited patient monitoring system than conventional imaging methods. The process involves capturing a blood sample in a tube, stabilizing its DNA for subsequent sequencing and analysis through a proprietary bioinformatics platform, delivering results within 7-10 days.

The K9-LiquiDX™ test focuses on detecting circulating DNA in the bloodstream, particularly from tumour cells. This pioneering liquid biopsy technology, also commonly used in human oncology, marks a significant shift in veterinary diagnostics for cancer monitoring.

Dr. Maciej Parys, a veterinarian at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies and director of CanCan Diagnostics, underlined the significance of this breakthrough in veterinary diagnostics, saying, ““We believe our approach of using liquid biopsy to detect and monitor cancers in dogs to be the first application of this type of technology to veterinary diagnostics in the UK and Europe. It will help improve the disease monitoring for affected pets and their owners, while also providing vets with a novel, minimally invasive and quick to perform diagnostic test.

“We anticipate that further development could lead to sophisticated diagnosis and personalised treatments, including specific products for particular breeds, in future.”

Advancing Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment

CanCan Diagnostics’ continuous refinement of this technology over several years, supported by funding from various sources, underscores their commitment to enhancing disease monitoring and diagnostics for pets. The company’s recent securing of pre-seed funding demonstrates the industry’s confidence in their vision and innovation.

While market research shows positive anticipation among veterinary experts regarding the potential of this technology, the team aims to launch the product early next year, paving the way for advanced diagnosis and personalized treatment options for dogs battling cancer.

Chris Sale, CEO of Advanced Genomics, comprising Nonacus and Informed Genomics, said, “We are dedicated to supporting CanCan Diagnostics in implementing cutting-edge advancements that have proven successful in human genetics, and enabling these diagnostics in the veterinary space.”