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Amplification of papillomaviral DNA sequences from a high proportion of feline cutaneous in situ and invasive squamous cell carcinomas using a nested polymerase chain reaction

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Squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) are common skin tumours of cats. Previous studies have suggested that papillomaviral (PV) DNA is detectible within some feline SCCs. A PV DNA sequence has been previously amplified from five feline bowenoid in situ carcinomas (BISCs). Primers specific for this sequence were used in a nested polymerase chain reaction to compare PV detection rates in SCCs to rates within non-SCC skin lesions. Papillomaviral DNA was amplified from 20 of 20 BISC, 17 of 20 invasive SCC and 3 of 17 non-SCC controls. The rate of PV amplification from feline cutaneous SCCs was significantly higher than from non-SCC lesions. These results confirm that feline cutaneous SCCs are associated with PV infection. In humans, there is evidence that PVs promote SCC development within sun-exposed skin. The demonstrated association between PVs and feline cutaneous SCCs suggests, but does not prove, that PVs may also promote feline SCC development. If PVs are oncogenic in cats, prevention of PV infection may reduce feline cutaneous SCC development. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first time that PV DNA has been amplified from a non-SCC sample of feline skin.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Pathobiology and 2: Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health, Department of Pathobiology and Diagnostic Investigation, College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University 3: New Zealand Veterinary Pathology Ltd, Palmerston North, New Zealand 4: Infectious Diseases, Institute of Veterinary, Animal and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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