Zoobiquity: The Astonishing Connection Between Human and Animal Health

by Barbara Natterson-Horowitz  (Author), Kathryn Bowers (Author)

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Consider the following questions and write answers on a separate page. Be prepared to discuss, you may want to use post-it notes to annote the text and keep notes. This chapter focuses on how animal models can be used to further our understanding of cancer.

golden retriever

Chapter 3: Jews, Jaguars, and Jurassic Cancer

1.  What is a longitudinal study?   What factors make them difficult for researchers to carry out?

2.  Why is the Golden Retriever research called the “Framingham for Dogs” study?

3.  The author compares Tessa’s concern about her two dogs having cancer to things he hears from cancer patients.   Why are these questions counterproductive but also helpful to the patient?

4.  Summarize this section in one sentence that explains the exact cellular cause of cancer.
What is apoptosis?

5.  What is metastasis?    What is the difference between benign and malignant tumors?

6.  This section (page) compares humans to many other species of animals that get similar cancers.  Create a chart to summarize each animal and the cancers found in them that relate to humans.   

7.  I often hear this statement from non-biologists:  “People didn’t use to get cancer.  It must be something in the air/water/food that’s doing this to us.”      How would the author respond to this statement?

8.  What is a “natural animal model” and why would they be prized by those studying disease?

9.  Why is it significant that cows don’t get breast cancer?  What did the author mean by suggesting women schedule  preventative lactation?

10.  How does our co-existence with domestic dogs provide data on cancer?

11.  Why might dogs be more useful as models than humanized mice?

12.  What is comparative oncology and how might it improve the lives of humans


Summary: Write a short summary paragraph that describes the content of the chapter and your overall thoughts. Include a quote, fact, or section that you found particularly interesting or thought provoking. You will share this with the class!