Marine Vertebrate and Other Higher Animal Biosynthetic Products

  • George R. Pettit


Neoplastic disease and its fatal consequences is an all-too-frequent occurrence among many species of higher animals. But cancer is relatively rare among many types of lower vertebrates, and even the higher vertebrates must have elaborately sophisticated biosynthetic products that normally prevent transgression by neoplastic invasion. In the lower vertebrates, known cases of cancer can be summarized as follows. Among the marine and fresh-water fish (superclass Pisces, phylum Chordata, sub-phylum Vertebrata), Harshbarger at the Smithsonian Institution has recorded a large number of species with neoplasms, including epizootic hepatomas in a population of Atlantic hag-fish, a metastatic melanoma in a single lamprey, and neoplasms in some five families of Chondrichthyes, including cat sharks, requiem sharks, ratfish, and skates.134 Interestingly neoplastic disease among such marine vertebrates is generally of the mesenchymal type, unlike that of human cancer.260


Snake Venom Ehrlich Ascites Carcinoma Marine Vertebrate Marine Reptile Ethyl Amide 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • George R. Pettit
    • 1
  1. 1.Arizona State UniversityTempeUSA

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