Common cholesterol drugs could help devils out of facial tumour hell

Common drugs used to lower cholesterol in humans could help save Tasmanian Devils from a terrible plague of facial tumours.

The tumours are passed from devil to devil through bites, which the famously aggressive animals do to each other often throughout their lives.

The research found statins, which reduce cholesterol, can prevent the tumours from growing.Credit:Save the Tasmanian Devil Program

It is estimated that Tasmanian devil facial tumour disease has caused an 80 per cent drop in the animals’ population since it was first identified in the 1990s, with fewer than 15,000 left in the wild.

The tumours, which are a form of aggressive cancer, have resisted previous attempts to treat them. However, researchers now believe they have…

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