Scientists have amortized the Tasmanian devil named Cedric, who at one time was considered resistant to cancer, annihilating the population of these animals. This decision was taken when Cedric’s cancer started to prevent him from eating properly, according to Associated Press.
Tasmanian devils are the carnivorous marsupial animals living on the island of Tasmania. In 1996, scientists discovered that cancer was spreading among the devils killing the animals very quickly. The tumor appeared on the face of the animals, and prevented them from eating and drinking. So far the disease has killed almost 70 percent of the population of devils. In 2009 they were put into the category of endangered animals.
While the researchers could not develop any cure or vaccine, that would prevent the infection. In 2007, the researchers developed a hope for finding a way to fight cancer, after they discovered a Tasmanian devil Cedric. After Cedric was injected with the cancer cells, the disease did not develop in him unlike in other animals, which the scientists had experimented. However, in 2008 when Cedric was given another line of cancer cells, Cedric developed two tumors, which began to grow very rapidly.
The scientists are concerned by the fact that this cancer in devils is killing the entire population of devils because it is spreading among them through biting. Devils are quite aggressive, so the disease spreads very quickly. Until recently, scientists were sure that this cancer was viral in nature, but in early 2010, a research paper was published which declared that the disease is transmitted by ‘clean’ cancer cells.