Marine, a 5-and-a-half year-old black Labrador retriever, just might be one of the world's most unexpected heroines in the fight against cancer. Marine's nose is capable of detecting 18 different types of cancer on a person's breath and has already been mechanically replicated as a sensor the size of a mobile phone to detect breast cancer. The manufacturer, Seems Inc., is hoping to have the product on the market within six months and for under 10,000 yen. Marine's supersensitive nose was discovered by her owner, Yuji Sato, 60, whose adoration for the dog opened his eyes to her incredible potential. Sato's insatiable desire to experiment, matched with Marine's love for him, have resulted in one of the more unusual, and fun-loving, research teams on earth.

Pets are the best healers. I used to take our smaller dogs to schools and nursing homes, and the minute the animals were placed on the knees of the very ill elderly or sick children, the pets' healing power was apparent. Unfortunately Japan is so behind the rest of the world in this field. We are refused entry to most places and many doctors either do not accept or do not care that animals have beneficial effects on patients.

To develop your talent, you must exercise. Marine's nose is sensitive but it is our daily exercise that makes her smelling ability exceptionally great. Every day I come up with new ideas to please her because her moods and my feelings are different daily so we never repeat things. One good exercise was buying two new glasses and letting her smell one after hiding the other on the beach among many other glass bins. She found the match immediately.