Research on the oncolytic myxoma virus in rabbits has led to understanding of the potential roles of this virus as a possible therapeutic agent which could fight some cancers in humans. Development of vaccines as therapeutic strategies has also been investigated in rabbits. Determination of best practices for other therapies could benefit human health as well. Evaluating treatment methods in rabbits will aid our understanding of their function in human clinical trials as well. Understanding the mechanisms of resistance to treatment that can develop in humans will also benefit from evaluation in rabbit models.
As with other model system, understanding the earliest phases of the development of cancer will lead researchers to potential points of intervention in human disease. These have been investigated in hamsters with an eye towards such control points. The evaluation of therapeutic interventions in hamsters has provided increased understanding of effective strategies that can translate to human treatments.
The expanding suite of cancer research tools in zebrafish may offer important routes for identification of potential carcinogens or chemopreventative agents. The opportunity to establish large-scale bioassay screening systems would be of particular utility on this front. More traditional evaluations of therapeutic interventions, and those using newer technologies, are also possible in zebrafish.