Updated: Nov 9
Paraneoplastic syndromes (PS) are frequently the first manifestations of tumors due to the production and release of biologically active molecules such as hormones, cytokines, peptides, and growth factors by tumor cells. Paraneoplastic disorders are common in human cancer patients, but there is a lack of knowledge about these diseases in animals. Cases of Paraneoplastic syndromes have also been reported in dogs and cats. However, these diseases have been diagnosed too late, after the identification of cancer. Thus, recognizing PS early on provides the opportunity to treat cancer successfully. PS occur distant from the tumor site and can be identified as a systemic disorder.
One of the tumor manifestations are Paraneoplastic Neurological disorders or Paraneoplastic Neurological Syndromes (PNS), which are the result of an indirect effect of the tumor on the nervous system and can appear before tumor identification with the ability to affect any part of the nervous system. Case reports demonstrate the effect of various tumor types on the brain and spinal cord.
PNS signs included acute limb paralysis, progressive loss of motor function, lack of coordination, loss of superficial and deep pain sensation over limbs, development of diencephalic syndrome, development of cerebellar degeneration, and more. PNS signs are typically related to auto-immune stimulation and the production of autoantibodies to specific substances. These autoantibodies, produced against some neuronal antigens, have been identified in serum and cerebrospinal fluid even before any cancer manifestations.
Therefore, the detection of autoantibodies related to PNS can help with early cancer diagnosis, finding adequate treatment, and avoiding unnecessary expansive procedures.
Pet Preferred Diagnostics will provide a universal serological multiplex test for dogs and cats that detects 21 types of cancers related to 14 neurological diseases. The test will be able to distinguish between cancer origin and neurological disorders in the very near future.
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