Understanding Dog Aging:
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, the aging process in dogs is distinct from that of humans. For instance, the first year of a medium-sized dog’s life is equivalent to 15 human years. By year two, a dog’s age is akin to about nine human years, with subsequent years corresponding to approximately five human years each. The Dog Aging Project aims to delve deeper into these aging patterns through extensive data collection and analysis.
The Pioneering Research:
In 2015, Dr. Kaeberlein initiated the first Dog Aging Project clinical trial, focusing on the drug rapamycin and its potential to slow down aging in pet dogs. This study aimed to establish the safety and feasibility of rapamycin, which had previously shown promising results in extending lifespan and addressing age-related disorders in mice.
Key Figures Behind the Dog Aging Project:
Professors Daniel Promislow and Matt Kaeberlein serve as co-directors, guiding the project’s overarching goals and objectives. Dr. Kate Creevy, the Chief Veterinarian, plays a crucial role in steering the research towards a comprehensive understanding of dog aging. The project’s relocation to Texas A&M University in 2016 signifies its commitment to expanding its reach and impact.
Engaging Citizen Science:
The Dog Aging Project places a strong emphasis on citizen science, involving dog owners as active participants in the research process. The 1-2-3 Treat Activity, a delightful search-and-find game, is a prime example. Participants receive an invitation to engage in this activity, guiding them through a series of tasks within their personalized research portal. This interactive approach not only fosters a sense of community but also enriches the data collected for a more comprehensive analysis.
TRIAD: Advancing Canine Longevity:
The Test of Rapamycin In Aging Dogs (TRIAD) stands as a testament to the project’s commitment to scientific rigor. This double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial explores the efficacy of the mTOR inhibitor rapamycin in extending the lifespan of dogs. The groundbreaking potential of rapamycin, demonstrated in mice, is now under scrutiny for its impact on aging in our beloved canine companions.
The Dog Aging Project stands at the forefront of canine health research, bridging the gap between scientific inquiry and the invaluable experiences of dog owners. By actively involving the community, pioneering research methodologies, and exploring innovative treatments like rapamycin, the project aspires to unlock the secrets of dog aging, ensuring that future generations of dogs lead the healthiest and happiest lives possible. Join us on this exciting journey towards enhancing the well-being and longevity of our four-legged friends!