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Feline head and neck squamous cell carcinoma: a natural model for the human disease and development of a mouse model

Tannehill-Gregg, S.H., Levine, A.L., Rosol, T.J.
Veterinary and comparative oncology 2006 v.4 no.2 pp. 84-97
animal models, bioluminescence, cats, drugs, head, human diseases, humans, image analysis, luciferase, metastasis, mice, neck, pathogenesis, screening, squamous cell carcinoma, United States
Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (H/N SCC) is a devastating disease in humans and cats, and shares similar features between the two species. The large population of pet cats inthe United States, along with the high incidence of oral SCC in the cat, makes the cat an attractive candidate as a natural model for the human disease. There are similarities in pathology, progression, outcome, resistance to treatment, possible aetiologies and p53 expression, and we discuss the benefits of the cat as a natural model. We describe the development of a nude mouse xenograft model of feline oral SCC using the SCCF1 cell line transfected with a luciferase expression construct. In vivo tumour growth and metastasis were measured using serial bioluminescent imaging, and tumours grew best in the subcutis. The cat and nude mouse models will be useful to investigate the pathogenesis and the molecular basis of H/N SCC, and for preclinical drug screening.