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ERBB3: A potential serum biomarker for early detection and therapeutic target for devil facial tumour 1 (DFT1)


Hayes, DA and Kunde, DA and Taylor, RL and Pyecroft, SB and Sohal, SS and Snow, ET, ERBB3: A potential serum biomarker for early detection and therapeutic target for devil facial tumour 1 (DFT1), PLOS One, 12, (6) Article e0177919. ISSN 1932-6203 (2017) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright: © 2017 Hayes et al. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0177919


Devil Facial Tumour 1 (DFT1) is one of two transmissible neoplasms of Tasmanian devils (Sarcophilus harrisii) predominantly affecting their facial regions. DFT1ís cellular origin is that of Schwann cell lineage where lesions are evident macroscopically late in the disease. Conversely, the pre-clinical timeframe from cellular transmission to appearance of DFT1 remains uncertain demonstrating the importance of an effective pre-clinical biomarker. We show that ERBB3, a marker expressed normally by the developing neural crest and Schwann cells, is immunohistohemically expressed by DFT1, therefore the potential of ERBB3 as a biomarker was explored. Under the hypothesis that serum ERBB3 levels may increase as DFT1 invades local and distant tissues our pilot study determined serum ERBB3 levels in normal Tasmanian devils and Tasmanian devils with DFT1. Compared to the baseline serum ERBB3 levels in unaffected Tasmanian devils, Tasmanian devils with DFT1 showed significant elevation of serum ERBB3 levels. Interestingly Tasmanian devils with cutaneous lymphoma (CL) also showed elevation of serum ERBB3 levels when compared to the baseline serum levels of Tasmanian devils without DFT1. Thus, elevated serum ERBB3 levels in otherwise healthy looking devils could predict possible DFT1 or CL in captive or wild devil populations and would have implications on the management, welfare and survival of Tasmanian devils. ERBB3 is also a therapeutic target and therefore the potential exists to consider modes of administration that may eradicate DFT1 from the wild.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:DFT1, ERBB3, biomarker
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Veterinary sciences
Research Field:Veterinary diagnosis and diagnostics
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Terrestrial biodiversity
UTAS Author:Kunde, DA (Dr Dale Kunde)
UTAS Author:Taylor, RL (Ms Robyn Taylor)
UTAS Author:Sohal, SS (Dr Sukhwinder Sohal)
UTAS Author:Snow, ET (Associate Professor Elizabeth Snow)
ID Code:117723
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:6
Deposited By:Health Sciences
Deposited On:2017-06-26
Last Modified:2018-09-13
Downloads:146 View Download Statistics

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