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Tasmanian devils: Will rare infectious cancer lead to their extinction?

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Scientist Andrew Storfer checking a Tasmanian devil for tumor facial disease.

Scientist Andrew Storfer checks a Tasmanian devil for signs of devil tumor facial disease.

Credit: Washington State University


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Watch a video interview with disease ecologist Andrew Storfer.

Credit: NSF


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Watch a video interview with NSF EEID program director Sam Scheiner.

Credit: NSF


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A tasmanian devil

Not all Tasmanian devils are docile; many share traits with the cartoon character "Taz."

Credit: Government of Tasmania


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Three Tasmanian devils eating

Whirling dervishes when feeding, Tasmanian devils may bite each other when eating.

Credit: Wikimedia Commons


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Tasmanian devil with Devil facial tumor disease, an infectious cancer,

Devil facial tumor disease, an infectious cancer, is decimating populations of Tasmanian devils.

Credit: Government of Australia


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Illustration showing aTasmanian devil and the now extinct thylacine

Will the Tasmanian devil (top) follow its relative the thylacine into extinction?

Credit: Government of Australia


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This still-healthy Tasmanian devil's future hangs in the balance.

This still-healthy Tasmanian devil's future hangs in the balance.

Credit: Wikimedia Commons


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