[Coral-List] Coral Tumors?????

John W. McManus jmcmanus at rsmas.miami.edu
Mon Oct 30 15:29:58 EST 2006

Hi Esther,

What is your favorite coral growth rate measuring approach as far as
usefulness in the GA studies?


John W. McManus, PhD
Director, National Center for Coral Reef Research (NCORE)
Professor, Marine Biology and Fisheries
Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science
University of Miami
305-342-4814 (O)
305-421-4910 (F)

"If I cannot build it, I do not understand it" 
-- Nobel Laureate Richard Feynman

-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
[mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Esther Peters
Sent: Monday, October 30, 2006 1:51 PM
To: Gary K. Ostrander
Cc: RTLA; coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Coral Tumors?????

Hi Shashank,

Gary is correct.  Those of us who have been studying these diverse 
lesions on corals have agreed that the best "field-identification name" 
is "growth anomaly" (GA). To determine if the lesion is a tumor (which 
means neoplasm, or cancer, malignant neoplasm), sections of both 
skeleton and tissue are needed to examine cell and tissue changes that 
meet the histologic criteria for neoplasia (versus hyperplasia or 
altered growth response to presence of a parasite, for example), and on 
these our group has agreed that more study is needed! However, I don't 
advocate sampling a lesion unless growth rate data have been obtained 
for a period of time first, because we need this information as well.

In Japan, growth anomalies have been studied, as reported in these papers:

Yamashiro, H., M. Yamamoto, and R. van Woesik.  2000.  Tumor formation 
on the coral Montipora informis.  Dis. Aquat. Org. 41:211-217.

Yamashiro, H., H. Oku, K. Onaga, H. Iwasaki, and K. Takara.  2001. 
Coral tumors store reduced level of lipids.  J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 

Again, "tumor" is now considered not an appropriate term, although many 
have used it in the sense of "a swelling" or "protuberant mass" (which 
might not be a neoplasm at all).

The Registry of Tumors in Lower Animals is interested in further 
sightings of and reports on similar lesions, with the goal of developing 
diagnostic criteria and standardized terminology for them, as we are 
doing for cellular proliferative disorders in other organisms (except 
birds and mammals).

Esther Peters, Ph.D.
Invertebrate Pathologist
Registry of Tumors in Lower Animals
administrator at pathology-registry.org

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