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Experimental tumours and their counterparts in man: some similarities and differences.

British Journal of Cancer
Nature Publishing Group
Publication Date
  • Research Article
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Medicine
  • Pharmacology


BRITISH ASSOCIATION FOR CANCER RESEARCH EXPERIMENTAL TUMOURS AND THEIR COUNTERPARTS IN MAN: SOME SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES R. L. CARTER From the Institute of Cancer Research and Royal Marsden Hospital, Sutton, Surrey MOST OF TIIE CHEMICALS known to induce cancers in man are also carcinogenic in ani- mals; arsenic and benzene are the best-known exceptions. The remaining carcinogens, active in both man and animals, show a tendency to affect common target organs such as the lungs and bladder, but, for each chemical, there are generally additional unshared target organs, particularly in animals. Even when there are common target sites for a given carcinogen, there are usually important differences, between man and animals, and between different species and strains of animals. Such differences include variations in the histology and growth pattern of the tumours and their antecedent lesions, which are likely to reflect different modes of expo- sure of the target organ to the carcinogen with respect to dose, route of administration, and species-determined variations in pharmaco- kinetics and metabolism. Thus for aromatic amines the bladder is a shared target organ in man and dog (and to some extent the hamster). The common laboratory rodents appear relatively resistant to the carcino- genic effects of these compounds at most potential target sites. The bladder tumours induced in man and in dogs carry no distinct pathological stigma and they vary between the two species in terms of their histology and growth pattern, the canine tumours being low-grade non-metastasizing lesions. By con- trast, several experimental species are suscep- tible to the lung carcinogens which are also active in man. The asbestos-induced pleural mesotheliomas are closely similar in histology and growth patterns, but the pathology of lung carcinomas is more divergent. The closest analogies are seen between man and rat. Both develop histologically similar squamous carcinomas and adenocarcinomas, though the anaplastic small-cel

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