Home Off Beat Tasmanian Devils Threatened by Their Infectious Cancer: Study

Tasmanian Devils Threatened by Their Infectious Cancer: Study

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The Tasmanian devil is reportedly the most powerful biter alive today. To add to it, its bit e causes facial cancer, which is spreading fast. It is to the extent that scientists now fear the disease getting transferred in tooth-baring combat.

For ten years, this facial cancer has threatened to wipe out Australia’s Tasmanian devils. Once widespread in Australia, the 20-pound (9-kilogram) marsupials now live only on the Australian island of Tasmania. The devils long seemed safe from extinction with as many as 150,000 roaming the wilds. In 1996, a nature photographer took a picture of a Tasmanian devil with a grotesque facial tumor. The disease seems to have spread rapidly. Though scientists have long known the disease is infectious, nobody understood the cause behind it, though some suspected that it might be transmitted via a virus.

Via: National Geographic News