Osteosarcoma (OS) is a primary and aggressive bone sarcoma affecting the skeleton of two principal species, human beings and canines. The biologic behavior of OS is conserved between people and dogs, and evidence suggests that fundamental discoveries in OS biology can be facilitated through detailed and comparative studies. In particular, the relative genetic homogeneity associated with specific dog breeds can provide opportunities to facilitate the discovery of key genetic drivers involved in OS pathogenesis, which, to-date, remain elusive. In this review, known causative factors that predispose to the development OS in human beings and dogs are summarized in detail. Based upon the commonalities shared in OS pathogenesis, it is likely that foundational discoveries in one species will be translationally relevant to the other and emphasizes the unique opportunities that might be gained through comparative scientific approaches.
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