Comparative Aspects of Certain Cancers

  • Harold L. Stewart
Part of the Cancer book series (C, volume 4)


Descriptions of the relative frequency, age distribution, site, histological appearance, and spread of tumors of man and lower animals are numerous. Many of the sources of information detail wide differences among species. To collect all the specific details of this information in one publication would amount to an encyclopedic task. I have therefore selected a few examples of common human neoplasms of specific sites and compared them with neoplasms of similar sites in other species. These are tumors of the lung, liver, mammary gland, and soft tissues, and, because of their recent appearance in employees of the plastics industry, malignant hemangioendotheliomas induced by exposure to vinyl chloride. While there are some similarities, there are many differences among species. A point of view that many writers on comparative oncology have adopted is to overemphasize the resemblance between neoplasms of lower animals, particularly rodents, and those of man. A stated aim of these authors has been to adopt, whenever possible, the classification and terminology proposed by the WHO International Reference Centers for the histological classification of human tumors. To stress the resemblances without pointing up the differences in structural appearances and known behavior is likely to mislead investigators to believe that many animal tumors are suitable models for the human tumors. What are needed are a series of workshops and studies by collaborative committees. These would bring together pathologists with their slides and their clinical, biological, and behavioral data in order to confer and to work out acceptable definitions of cancer types in different species of lower animals.


Mammary Gland Mammary Tumor Hepatic Tumor Mixed Tumor Pulmonary Tumor 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Harold L. Stewart
    • 1
  1. 1.Registry of Experimental CancersNational Cancer Institute, National Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA

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