AKC Canine Health Foundation Announces $432,000 Grant to Fight Cancer in Dogs

RALEIGH, N.C. – The AKC Canine Health Foundation (CHF), a nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing, treating, and curing diseases in all dogs, is pleased to announce the funding of an exciting grant which aims to better understand and prevent hemangiosarcoma, an aggressive form of cancer in dogs. Three groups whose dogs have been affected by this cruel disease — the American Boxer Charitable Foundation, the Golden Retriever Foundation, and the Portuguese Water Dog Foundation — are taking a unique, collaborative stand against cancer by pledging $432,000 to support this research effort.

Dr. Jaime Modiano, VMD, PhD, professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine and the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota will be leading a team of researchers on this project entitled, “A Novel Approach for Prevention of Canine Hemangiosarcoma,” which aims to pair two novel technologies consisting of a patented test to detect hemangiosarcoma cells in blood samples, and a treatment that attacks the cells that establish and maintain the disease.

According to Dr. Modiano, “Hemangiosarcoma is the cause of death for an estimated one out of every five Golden Retrievers in the United States. Portuguese Water Dogs and Boxers also have an especially high risk for this disease which is devastating for all dogs.” Dr. Modiano continues, “Hemangiosarcoma is incurable partly because the cancer is detected at a very advanced stage when it is resistant to conventional therapies. Thus, an unconventional approach to improve outcomes for hemangiosarcoma patients will involve effective methods for early detection and for disease prevention.”

“The Golden Retriever Foundation is honored to partner with the American Boxer Charitable Foundation and Portuguese Water Dog Foundation to magnify the effectiveness of all of our donors’ contributions through the power of collaboration, said Collette Jaynes, president, Golden Retriever Foundation. “We are particularly proud to continue our commitment to making meaningful strides against hemangiosarcoma.”

This project will create tools to guide further development, licensing, and deployment of new paired technologies against cancer, specifically hemangiosarcoma, with an ultimate goal for disease prevention in all dogs.

“The Portuguese Water Dog Foundation (PWDF) is honored to be included in this unprecedented collaboration. The PWDF played a role in supporting Dr. Modiano’s 2005 research to develop a diagnostic test to detect hemangiosarcoma, and we are happy and proud to help take this research to the next level,” said Carol Mattingley, PWDF president.

“This novel approach to a particularly aggressive form of cancer in dogs has the potential to eventually change the landscape and improve outcomes for all dogs diagnosed with this terrible disease,” said Dr. Diane Brown, CHF chief scientific officer. “The unprecedented collaboration between these three breed club foundations and their dedication to canine health has really driven this project forward – together they are making a significant difference for all dogs.”

CHF supports the funding of this effort and will oversee administration of funds and scientific progress.

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