“Glimmer of hope”: A Tasmanian devil colony displays possible immunity to deadly facial tumor disease

Nearly 70 percent of the world’s Tasmanian devils ( Sarcophilus harrisii ) have been killed in the past 10 years by an infectious cancer called devil facial tumor disease (DFTD). So far, no cure has been found, and the disease has spread to almost every corner of the remote island off the southeastern coast of Australia, the only place on Earth where they live in the wild.

But now a colony of devils living near Cradle Mountain in northwestern Tasmania has displayed immunity against DFTD, and scientists say this could be the hope the species needs.


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