Treating Animal Cancer in Australia

Animal Cancer Care established in November 1997 by Dr Rod Straw offered the first veterinary oncology specialist service in Australia. The company provided a referral veterinary oncology service and operated from the School of Veterinary Science at the University of Queensland in Brisbane.

In April 2004 the consultancy moved to a purpose built, large, very well-equipped referral veterinary hospital in Albany Creek, 20 km north of the Brisbane CBD. This hospital is called Brisbane Veterinary Specialist Centre – The Animal Hospital (BVSC) and was designed, built and financed by Dr Rod Straw.

Animal Cancer Care has now been absorbed into BVSC's oncology service at The Animal Hospital working synergistically with specialties of Internal Medicine, Small Animal Surgery, Radiation Oncology, Dentistry, Ophthalmology and Physiotherapy.

The cancer caseload at BVSC –The Animal Hospital continues to steadily grow. The Hospital and The Foundation collaborate with researchers from institutions such as the Centre for Advanced imaging and the Diamantina Institute – University of Queensland and the Translational Research Institute (just to mention a couple), to develop and trial improved treatment protocols for pets and people with cancer.

Research in Australia adds significantly to the understanding of this vast and complex subject. Australia, and in particular Queensland, is somewhat uniquely placed in that the incidence of solar induced cancers in animals and people is very high. These types of cancers could quite possibly be better studied using the BVSC – The Animal Hospital facility in Australia compared to facilities in less sunny climates.  The high caseload of pets with cancer seen at BVSC places this hospital in a unique position to unlock secrets about cancer treatment.  It is one cancer and curing cancer in pet animals results in cancer cures in people.

As the site for Australia’s first oncology centre for animals, BVSC-The animal Hospital in Brisbane plays a major role in the Australian Consortium of Comparative Oncology.  This is a national group of specialist veterinary oncologists and researchers dedicated to ethically evaluate novel ways of treating cancer while helping pet animals with cancer.  The Consortium adds power to our clinical studies and provides a means to perform much needed clinical trial work in a timely fashion with far less expense than the traditional “murine trials to human clinic” models.



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