Neroli Thomson

Doctor of Philosophy, (Veterinary Science)
Study Completed: 2017
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
Felis catus Papillomavirus Type 2 Infection and Skin Cancer in Domestic Cats

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Felis catus papillomavirus type 2 (FcaPV-2) is a virus which infects the skin of domestic cats and is often found in an aggressive type of skin cancer. While this could suggest a role of the virus in cancer development, the virus has also been detected in samples from normal cats making it difficult to discern whether the virus is causing the cancer or merely an 'innocent bystander'. To distinguish between these two possibilities, Ms Thomson investigated the quantity and activity of the virus in numerous normal and cancerous skin samples. Her results suggested that FcaPV-2 was involved in the development of around one third of the cancers. However, it was also found that FcaPV-2 infection was common and occurred early in life. Therefore, there appears to be little opportunity to prevent cancer development by preventing FcaPV-2 infection, so alternate approaches are needed to reduce the incidence of these cancers.

Professor John Munday
Professor Keith Thompson
Associate Professor Magda Dunowska
Professor Keren Dittmer