Retired Alaskan sled dogs guide the way to healthier golden years

Retired Alaskan sled dogs guide the way to healthier golden years


HEATHER HUSON: The
project overall is to study aging in dogs. And we quantify aging by
monitoring their health over time as well as
looking very specifically at their immune function,
their behavioral changes, and their physical
condition over time. And then in the
long run, our goal is to see if we can use a
different type of drug therapy to minimize the
effects of aging. Good girl. I think the really
nice part here is the dog model, while
it is long term, looking at human health, this will have
a major impact on dog health as well. JOHN LOFTUS: Our
approach is going to be to give them a reverse
transcriptase inhibitor and hopefully reduce
inflammation, reduce the incidence of cancer
and other diseases related mutations in DNA damage, and
ideally, increase lifespan. So certainly, there’s a
link between inflammation and Alzheimer’s. In dogs, we call it canine
cognitive dysfunction. But it’s actually a very
good model for Alzheimer’s. And so a lot of the biology
behind canine cognitive dysfunction applies
to Alzheimer’s. HEATHER HUSON: Alaskan
sled dogs offers us the option to basically study
a fairly homogeneous population of dogs. So even though they’re not
a recognized purebred breed of dog, they’re still basically
a distinct genetic population. And with this
athletic background, we could really look
at them and say, these dogs have already
been conditioned well all of their lives. We just need to acclimate
them to unique conditioning. So instead of running on a sled
or in front of a four-wheeler, now they’re running
on a treadmill, or they’re pulling a
cart down a hallway instead of out on a trail. Regardless of how
long our funding goes for the research and the
degree of research that we do, the dog’s support is confirmed
throughout their lifespan. I see you. I see you. Thank you. JOHN LOFTUS: Any
procedure that we’re doing on these dogs
for research is nothing that wouldn’t be done
on an awake human athlete. So I think these dogs– we’re really providing them
a great quality of life. And that’s part of the
mission of this research, is to improve the
quality of life of dogs.

Antonio Breitenberg

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2 thoughts on “Retired Alaskan sled dogs guide the way to healthier golden years

  1. FT says:

    What is a reverse T inhibitor?

  2. Robot Porn Enthusiasts 2007 says:

    Save the dogs!

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