Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Multicentric Squamous Cell Tumors in Panther Chameleons (Furcifer pardalis)


Link to article

Panther Chameleons

Squamous cell carcinoma is a common tumor found in many animals, including Furcifer pardalis. Otherwise known as the panther chameleon, they are kept as exotic pets as many, although native to Madagascar. Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is a malignant growth that affects the squamous epithelium of the skin. The development of this malignancy is classically associated with damage to the tissue, including UV lighting that is too strong, and viral infection. Most notably, viral infection such as papilloma viruses can predispose a chameleon to scale and epithelial tissue damage. In this study, various aged male panther chameleons (sub-adult to senior-aged) were identified to have epithelial disturbance. Immunologic response can be altered using the drug Imiquimod, which modifies the immune response to non-surgically remove the mass. Additionally, surgical resection can be performed, although difficult given the size and anatomy of the chameleons. Researchers mention that although the small, it is important to consider the implications. I believe that researchers should also investigate whether selective breeding for color on these beautiful creatures may impact cancer and malignant tumor rates in chameleons, as well as other selectively bred pets. 

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your thought that perhaps the selective breeding has caused a greater likelihood of developing cancer. In dog breeding, certain breeds are more likely to develop specific illnesses and I feel as though it is a similar phenomenon.