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Video: Dogs Begin Clinical Trial To Sniff Out Cancer

Update Date: Nov 23, 2015 09:54 AM EST

An amazing cancer detection test by British organization Medical Detection Dogs involves eight dogs to do the smelly job.

They are required to sniff out cancer in their team as part of a detection clinical trial. They need to smell 3,000 samples of urine that have been sent by the National Health Service to check on the presence of cancer, according to HNGN.

Claire Guest, the CEO of the body, was identified as a cancer-affected patient by her dog, Daisy, six years ago.

 "She kept staring at me and lunging into my chest. It led me to find a lump," Guest said, according to CNN.

Doctors found the cancerous tumor inside her breast.

"Had it not been drawn to my attention by Daisy, I'm told my prognosis would have been very poor," she added.

The Cancer Detection Dogs are under coaching to identify cancer, even as the Medical Alert Assistance Dogs are being trained to help and support people who are facing tough situations.

"We are a charity that works in partnership with researchers, NHS Trusts, and Universities. Our aim is to train specialist dogs to detect the odour of human disease," the organization says, according to the Medical Detection Dogs  website.

Hence, the dogs are required to walk around and sniff at all the samples. While just one sample is that of a cancer patient, the other seven are from patients who may show symptoms of cancer patients, but without the illness.

Amazingly, dogs have 300 million smell sensors, while humans only have 5 million. A second nose at the back of its physical nose is also called the Jacobson's Organ, which enhances their olfactory nerves. The Jacobson's Organ, or the vomeronasal organ, enables them to isolate volatile organic compounds in a person's breath, urine, or even the skin.

Earlier, four trained dogs had detected volatile organic compounds in urine samples. When a single bladder with a cancer positive urine sample was placed along with six controls, a dog was able to locate the positive one 73 percent of the time, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.


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