More Funding for the Dog Aging Project

There is a growing enthusiasm for aging research and the development of interventions aimed at slowing or reversing aging. This has reached the point at which people with significant resources are becoming involved, and thus the more prominent projects in the research and development communities are gaining support that would have been hard to find just a few short years ago. This new funding for the Dog Aging Project is a good example of the growing level of support for work on aging, undertaken by people who have bought into the vision of a future in which medical technology allows for much longer, healthier lives for all.

The Dog Aging Project, a scientific initiative to help companion dogs and people live longer, healthier lives together, has received a $2.5 million pledge from a consortium of tech entrepreneurs. The Dog Aging Project brings together a community of dogs, owners, veterinarians, researchers, and volunteers to carry out the largest canine health study in the world. The donation will expand this research into longevity science. The donors include Brian Armstrong, Coinbase founder and CEO; Peter Attia, physician; Juan Benet, Protocol Labs founder and CEO; Fred Erhsam, co-founder of Paradigm and Coinbase; Adam Fisher of Bessemer Venture Partners; author Tim Ferriss and the Saisei Foundation; Jed McCaleb, Stellar co-founder and CTO and founder of the Astera Institute; and food author Darya Rose and internet entrepreneur Kevin Rose.

The Dog Aging Project has two fundamental goals: first, to understand how genes, lifestyle, and environment influence aging; and second, to intervene to increase healthspan, the period of life spent free from disease. Discoveries made by the Dog Aging Project could be translatable to people. More than 32,000 companion dogs and their owners are already part of the Dog Aging Project. All the dogs live and play at home with their families. Most of these dogs participate in the observational Longitudinal Study of Aging. Each dog owner completes extensive surveys about the health and life experience of their dog through a secure research portal. This information is paired with comprehensive environmental, genetic, and biochemical data to yield insights about aging.

In addition, the Dog Aging Project is conducting a double-blind, placebo controlled, veterinary clinical trial of the medicine rapamycin, which at low doses has been shown to extend lifespan in laboratory animals. The trial is called TRIAD, an acronym for Test of Rapamycin in Aging Dogs. The $2.5 million in new funding provided by the consortium of donors will go directly to scientific research. This support will allow the Dog Aging Project to expand the TRIAD Trial to include more study locations and to increase the number of dogs enrolled in TRIAD.



Wouldn't it be cheaper to make human cell lines and give them all anti aging treatments and get better results.

Posted by: tom.a at January 18th, 2022 5:41 AM

giving off-the shelf medicine is cheap. Probably the most expensive part is the labor. Lab cells are quite pricey. However, i would like to see studies for D+Q and other senolytics in old dogs.

Posted by: Cuberat at January 18th, 2022 9:35 AM

Im sure soon there will be robotic systems handle cells that work 24/7 and you don't need electricity for warming in those labs since no humans work there. cheaper then dogs.

Posted by: tom.a at January 18th, 2022 10:37 AM

We use the dogs for research purposes, and as a side effect help our pets. Intuitively they are a good model since they share our lifestyle (overeating, sedentary, and living till old age with a lot of age-related diseases) .

The human cell lines are a very limited tool for modelling the disease and the treatment. What works in vitro doesn't necessarily do in-vivo. There might be side effects that affect different organs or systems.

The state of the art approach is to do some (computer/thought) simulation to find drug candidates, the do tests in cell models. Then mice and other animals. If the result is promising and safe then we go to human trials. And each step could and does fail.

What is unfortunate here is that if there's a treatment that works well in humans but is toxic to the mice we might trough it out of the window.

And mice are poor models for some conditions. For example, Alzheimer's is purely human problem. It takes over a decade to develop. What we have in mice is some superficially similar degenerative disease. No wonder that all the drugs that do wonders in murine trials fail in humans.

Posted by: Cuberat at January 18th, 2022 11:46 AM

These drug repurposing studies are a waste of time and money, and get us no closer to knowing true long term longevity benefits in humans

Many drugs kill dogs which are fine for humans and vice versa

More wasted effort, just like the TAME trial

Posted by: Dan Terio at January 18th, 2022 6:11 PM
Comment Submission

Post a comment; thoughtful, considered opinions are valued. New comments can be edited for a few minutes following submission. Comments incorporating ad hominem attacks, advertising, and other forms of inappropriate behavior are likely to be deleted.

Note that there is a comment feed for those who like to keep up with conversations.