Histiocytic sarcoma as a breed specific disease in the Flat-coated retriever
Hjorungdal Bigset, Maria
MetadataShow full item record
The Flat-coated retriever is a small breed of dogs as far as numbers are concerned, and developed in England in the mid 1800s when the need for a retrieving breed became evident. It is believed to be a mix of several other breeds, with the St. Johns dog from Newfoundland as an important participator. After being very popular at the turn of the century, its popularity declined in the 1920s, and this combined with very little breeding during World War II resulted in a very small number of flats after the war. In 1947 only 75 dogs were registered in England. To save the breed all dogs available were used in breeding, no matter age or faults. Nowadays there are populations of FCRs spread throughout Europe and USA, but it remains a relatively small breed. A problem with tumour diseases (cancer) is recognized in the breed “everywhere”, and researchers have taken an interest in this in several countries. The theory is that this is a genetic disease, and the hunt for the gene(s) responsible has been ongoing for a number of years already. There is especially one type of soft tissue sarcoma that has been dominating among the malignant tumours in this breed, and over the years it has been given several names: undifferentiated soft tissue sarcoma, malignant fibrous histiocytoma, malignant histiocytosis, and histiocytic sarcoma, to mention a few. In recent years the scientists seem to have landed on the term histiocytic sarcoma (HS) as a common name for all these tumours. England, and the University of Cambridge, is the place where the research has been going on the longest, and this is also the place that seems to have achieved most results with their research. However, research is also ongoing in Sweden and the US to find the genes responsible and from there try and find out how to best handle the disease. In Sweden the research is more aimed at cancer in general than HS in particular. For the future we can hope hope that the research will succeed, and that genetic testing of dogs can help in the eradication of the disease, as well as in the therapy of it.