Pets suffer just like humans from the problems of aging. Living longer and longer lives means animals face challenges and new problems in maintaining a high quality of life.
One of the most common ailments suffered by animals is cognitive dysfunction syndrome, canine alzheimer’s disease. This type of syndrome is similar to dementia in humans and can affect sleep cycles, cause memory loss or disorientation, and impair relationships with people and other animals they live with. The quality of life of the pet is modified, as well as the human-animal relationship.
Regarding this problem, an Australian biotechnology company seems to have made progress in this area and succeeded in reversing dementia in a group of affected dogs. The neurorestorative approach aims to rebuild and replace brain cells lost in the disease.
During veterinary trial, the researchers were able to observe how canine Alzheimer’s syndrome was reversed in the animals studied. “Dementia was reversed in more than half of canine patients, with a clinically significant 80% improvement. In general, the improvement lasted about two years,” they rejoice.
The researchers defend their new approach as a “glimmer of hope” for Alzheimer’s disease, in both humans and animals.
“Our goal is to treat the cause of dementia, that is, to restore lost neurons and synapses. To do this, we carry out a treatment which consists of direct microinjection of skin-derived neuroprecursors into the bilateral hippocampuswhich is the center of memory and the first area affected by the disease,” they explain.
Although their primary therapeutic target is Alzheimer’s, they state that their technology “also has the potential to treat neurodegenerative diseases, like Parkinson’s diseaseamyotrophic lateral sclerosis and the like”.
Due to deep parallels between the canine brain and the human brainand the Canine Alzheimer’s and human Alzheimer’s“We started this trial 10 years ago with the assumption that if it is going to work in humans, it has to work in dogs first. And the results have far exceeded expectations,” rejoice the authors.
The hippocampus, the memory center of the brain, “was teeming with baby neurons and new synapses, precisely where we deliver cells. Compared to untreated dogs, it was like night and day“.
Therefore, with the further development of the technique, “the new skin cell therapy may have potential for treating human and canine patients with Alzheimer’s disease”.