It has been just revealed that we might have a life-extending drug for big dogs coming soon! Check out more details about this extremely exciting matter below.
Life-extending drug for dogs gets closer
The announcement was made following the confirmation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Center for Veterinary Medicine that Loyal’s 2,300-page data, as shared by CEO Celine Halioua, met the key requirement for the FDA’s fast-track conditional approval pathway for animal therapies.
The requirement is the reasonable expectation of effectiveness, which means the FDA is satisfied that the drug, LOY-001, is likely to be effective in prolonging the lifespan of large dogs.
Although Loyal is yet to produce safety and manufacturing data for LOY-001, conditional approval (if granted) would allow the drug to be marketed for canine life extension while awaiting full approval.
The company hopes to launch LOY-001 as early as 2026, subject to approval.
“Loyal was founded with the ambitious goal of developing the first drugs to extend healthy lifespan in dogs,” said Halioua in a statement. “This milestone is the result of years of careful work by the team. We’ll continue to work just as diligently to bring this and our other longevity programs through to FDA approval.”
Big and giant breeds of dogs, like golden retrievers, Great Danes, and Newfoundlands, are known for having significantly shorter lifespans compared to smaller breeds.
For instance, Newfoundlands have an average life expectancy of only eight to ten years. Previous studies suggest that this is due to selective breeding for larger size, which results in shorter lifespan, despite giving them the genetic makeup for larger body structure.
“The extreme phenotypic variety found in dogs is not ‘natural’ – it’s the result of intensive breeding by humans to create dogs that excelled at tasks such as herding, protection, and companionship,” said Brennen McKenzie, Loyal’s Director of Veterinary Medicine.
“At Loyal, we see the short lifespan of big dogs not as inevitable, but as a genetically-associated disease caused by historical artificial selection, and therefore amenable to targeting and treatment with a drug.”
Large dogs are believed to have elevated levels of the growth hormone IGF-1, which is the target of LOY-001. Administered via injection every three to six months, LOY-001 aims to reduce the level of IGF-1 to that found in smaller dogs, which are known to have longer lifespans.
The FDA has reviewed Loyal’s data and has found it to support the “reasonable expectation of effectiveness” of the drug, which suggests that its goal is likely to be achieved.
However, this does not imply that dogs can live forever.
“These are definitely not immortality or radical life-span-extension drugs,” said Halioua in an email sent to the New York Times. “Nothing we are developing could make a dog live forever.”
While it may not extend a dog’s life indefinitely, LOY-001 provides some hope that our furry friends can enjoy a longer lifespan and a better quality of life during their years.
Additionally, if it meets FDA standards, LOY-001 would be the first-ever lifespan-extension drug to receive approval, which could mark a crucial step in the development of longevity drugs in general.