Doctors and vets both receive an upscale subsidized education. They both train for a minimum of five years at a huge cost to the taxpayer. In the UK, recent increases in tuition fees don’t appear to possess had any effect on the demand for medical and veterinary education, with several new schools being established in both fields to satisfy growing demand.
But although doctors and vets are alleged to speak an equivalent clinical language, the sad truth is that medicine and veterinary research became separate disciplines. Members of two of the foremost intelligent and impressive professions barely ask one another.
Situations, where veterinarians and physicians might cooperate successfully and productively, are exceptions instead of the norm. If they worked together more closely, they might speed up the interpretation of the latest treatments from laboratory and companion animals to humans.
They would even have a greater chance of tackling the common health problems that humans and animals face today. After all, a drag shared may be a problem halved. Men aren’t mice and lots of treatments that are developed in pre-clinical animal models don’t translate well to humans. However, humans and companion animals are much closer, and since many of our pets suffer from equivalent chronic diseases that reduce our longevity and quality of life a collaborative approach is probably going to be more fruitful.
Cancer is one area, especially where greater collaboration between doctors and vets may benefit each side. The incidence of cancer is steadily growing across the planet due to the expanding aging population and therefore the rise in obesity. Many sorts of cancer are essentially equivalent to humans and dogs. By studying osteosarcoma (the commonest sort of bone cancer) in dogs we will study aggressive bone cancers in humans and develop safer, more specific, and simpler treatments for both species.
Dogs have a shorter lifespan than humans. Therefore studying and testing new cancer treatments in dogs across their lifetime would be far quicker than making equivalent studies over the decades of a person’s life. this type of research would be done more cheaply and therefore the data sharing will benefit both species. And while many cancer research is completed in mouse models, the info from mice often doesn’t translate well to human patients. So shifting the main target on to dogs would bring closer benefits to humans.
Clearly, the advantages of human and animal treatments aren’t mutually exclusive. If the disciplines of human and veterinary oncology were brought closer together, a number of the biological therapies being developed for human cancer may benefit our pets.
Where there has been greater communication between the 2 disciplines, new treatment approaches have emerged as a result. Limb-sparing surgery in dogs with osteosarcoma led to an equivalent thing being wiped out human adolescents years later. This has had an enormous impact on human cancer patients, giving children with osteosarcoma the prospect to stay the limb during which the tumor was located.
Another example is that the melanoma vaccine that was initially developed for humans and animals in parallel. While it’s still being trialed for humans, it’s taken a lifetime of its own in medicine and a version for dogs has become the primary therapeutic cancer vaccine approved for human or animal use.
The only antineoplastic approved specifically for dogs, toceranib (marketed as Palladia), started with testing in laboratory dogs with mastocyte tumors. Subsequent work focused on human cancer and more toceranib drugs were developed, creating a multi-billion dollar industry.
Although many of us might imagine that this area can progress in human oncology with none veterinary involvement, vets can still help because they will use dogs to review endpoints and biomarkers during a shorter timeframe. this is often far more difficult to try to to with human patients. The US Food and Drug Administration has now approved several of those sorts of drugs that were originally developed to be used in dogs.
Multidisciplinary collaboration is that the only thanks to confirming that advances in basic science are often translated into new diagnostics, therapeutics, and most vital of all, preventive strategies for the foremost common diseases within the 21st century.
I might wish to see the likes of the Gates Foundation create new funding calls and collaborative initiatives that need equal partnership and collaboration between medical and veterinary colleges.
The One Health concept remains evolving. But doctors and vets still don’t communicate enough. Unless things change, both humans and animals will still suffer needlessly.