Pig Makes Lymphoma History

A 730-pound pig has made history as the first of its species to successfully undergo treatment for lymphoma.

One of farmer and animal lover George Goldner's six massive pigs had not only stopped eating, but this one, named Nemo, was just laying in the mud.

Concerned, Goldner took Nemo by trailer to Cornell University Hospital for Animals (CUHA) in Ithaca, N.Y., where the 4-year-old Hampshire pig was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoma.

Unfortunately, no one knew what to do next.

Searching for a treatment

Undaunted, Goldner told the doctors to figure out what to do for Nemo and not to be concerned with how much it cost.

That was almost five months ago, and today Nemo is believed to be in remission and part of the history books as the first known pig with B-cell lymphoma to be successfully treated.

A step forward

In the wake of this success, researchers believe there might be hope for other large animals in similar circumstances.

Emily Barrell, a CUHA resident whose job it was to both determine what chemotherapy drugs to use and how to deliver it said:

Before when large animals were diagnosed with cancer, it was pretty much impossible to treat them. Now we have a model to base it on.

One of the problems the doctors had to overcome was the fact that pigs do not have easily accessible veins like humans, so researchers at CUHA had to implant a vascular access port under the pig's skin behind his ear to deliver the chemotherapy.

Goldner's dedication to his animal is being hailed by the likes of PETA and others.

"There were two choices," Goldner said. "One was to let him die and the other was to give it a shot."

Source: Various outlets

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