Dysbiosis Enhancing Linkage Towards Association with Canine Osteosarcoma (DEL-TACO) 

Sam Stewart


Primary Location: ?
Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital -- Woburn, Massachusetts

Recruitment Status:

Interested in
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Primary Study Contact:
Sam Stewart

Recruitment Start Date:

Recruitment End Date:

Results Posted:

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Animal owners interested in participating in a study are encouraged to discuss their eligibility for any relevant study with their veterinarian.
  • Project Description
    • Intestinal dysbiosis is an alteration in the composition and/or richness of the intestinal microbiota. Intestinal dysbiosis has been associated with tumor progression of colorectal, lung, and breast cancer in human patients. Proposed mechanisms of the microbiome’s influence on cancer progression includes direct DNA breakage from bacterial toxins, modulation of the host's cellular survival mechanisms, generation of oxidative stress, and promotion of inflammation and immune dysregulation. The objective of this study is to determine whether or not canine patients diagnosed with osteosarcoma have intestinal dysbiosis and if the presence of intestinal dysbiosis is associated with metastasis in these patients.

      Due to their similar biological behavior, yet higher incidence rate and shorter lifespan, dogs are an excellent model for spontaneous osteosarcoma in the human. Understanding the role that dysbiosis plays in tumor presentation and metastasis in dogs may give us insight into its association in humans with osteosarcoma. To date, no studies have been published investigating the intestinal microbiota in dogs or humans with osteosarcoma.

  • Secondary Location(s)
    • Veterinary Specialty Hospital - North County
      San Marcos, California

      Veterinary Specialty Hospital - Sorrento Valley
      San Diego, California

      Peak Veterinary Referral Center
      Williston, Vermont

      Wisconsin Veterinary Referral Hospital
      Waukesha, Wisconsin

      Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital
      Wheat Ridge, Colorado
  • Study Type
    • Sample Collection
  • Intervention
    • none - sample collection only
  • Inclusion Criteria
      • Any dogs with a confirmed osteosarcoma, with or without metastasis. Patients with a suspected osteosarcoma based on x-ray appearance are also eligible for enrollment, although they will be removed from the study if a biopsy is later found to be not consistent with osteosarcoma. Metastatic disease does not need to be confirmed with a biopsy, but must be strongly suspected based on imaging. 
  • Exclusion Criteria
      • Dogs who have received oral antibiotics within 4 weeks prior to collection of fecal samples.
      • Dogs with gastrointestinal symptoms (vomiting, diarrhea) within 4 weeks of sample collection.
      • Dogs with a history of gastrointestinal disease (inflammatory bowel disease, protein losing enteropathy, lymphangiectasia, etc.) that was diagnosed via histopathology.
      • Dogs with a chronic recurrent history of gastrointestinal symptoms within the previous year.
  • Potential Medical Benefits to Enrolled Animals
    • Patients enrolled in the study will receive extensive screening diagnostics performed. There are no therapeutic interventions in this study. 
  • Potential Medical Risks to Enrolled Animals
    • As there are no therapeutic interventions in this study, there is a low level of risk for complications. 
  • Financial Incentives for Study Participants
    • Fully funded including initial screening
  • Study Results