Tasmanian devils are plagued by Devil Facial Tumor Disease (DFTD), and are one of only seven species in the world that can contract a contagious cancer.
Devil Facial Tumor Disease (DFTD) is extremely unusual as it is only one of six recorded cancers than can spread like a contagious disease.
Currently, we know of transmissible cancers spreading through natural animal populations in seven species across vertebrate and invertebrate organisms and in both terrestrial and marine ecosystems. It is expected further study will likely uncover more examples. Of the known transmissible cancers, two are found in Tasmanian devils, three in five different species of bivalves, and one in dogs.