Incidence, characteristics and geographical distributions of canine and human non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in the Porto region (North West Portugal).


Department of Veterinary Clinics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto, Portugal. Electronic address: [Email]


Lymphoma is one of the most common neoplasms in dogs and it is one of the top five causes of cancer-related deaths, similar to human lymphoma. Companion animal epidemiological studies define dogs as sentinels of potential risk factors for human health, mainly due to shared environments, shorter disease latencies, and spontaneous disease. The aims of this study were to describe human and canine epidemiologic features of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) and their similarities, and to investigate a possible geographical association in the incidence risks in the Greater Porto area, in north-western Portugal. The postal codes of human NHL patients diagnosed between 2005 and 2010 residing in the Greater Porto, Portugal, were obtained from North and Central Region Cancer Registries of Portugal. Available data from dogs diagnosed with lymphoma between 2005 and 2016 from several veterinary centres were also collected. Descriptive epidemiology, mapping cases, and age-standardised risks of NHL incidence (ASR) were determined for both species. The results showed a higher risk (P<0.05) of NHL in men (ASR men: 18.1 cases/100,000 inhabitants; women: 14.2 cases/100,000 inhabitants) and in male dogs (ASR males: 82 cases/100,000 dogs; females: 70 cases/100,000 dogs). The geographical distribution of human and canine ASR was well correlated (r=0.664, P<0.05), with the highest values for human and canine ASR detected in the same urban municipalities of the Greater Porto: Porto, Matosinhos and Maia. These findings suggest the existence of exposure similarities, supporting the relevance of cancer surveillance in pet animals as efficient tools to predict health hazards for humans.


Cancer epidemiology,Comparative oncology,Dog,Geographic distribution,Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma,