(PRWEB) February 1, 2006
A trial study for a potential drug to combat obesity in pets has resulted in an eighty per cent reduction in weight gain in lab rats.
Perth-based biotechnology company Stirling Products Limited (ASX: STI) completed the trial in the United States.
“The aim was to provide initial data for weight loss in obese animals in support of our goal of finding a weight loss solution for obese companion animals,” said Managing Director, Dr Calvin London.
The drug being tested R-salbutamol is derived from a common active ingredient used to treat asthma in humans. It reduced weight increase by 57 per cent at a dose of 1.25 mg and by 79 per cent at a dose of 2.5 mg when given to a special breed of rats called Obese Zucker rats over a two-week period.
The Obese Zucker rat is commonly used for testing weight loss therapies as they are persistent eaters and gain weight at a faster rate than any other laboratory animal.
“These encouraging results indicate that animals treated with R-salbutamol gained significantly less in weight than control animals and future trials will be planned to demonstrate the effects of R-salbutamol in obese dogs and cats,” said Dr London.
Obesity in companion animals, such as dogs and cats occurs in up to 44 per cent of pets in Western countries such as the United States, Europe and Australia. According to the American Pet Products Manufacturer’s Association there are 73 million dogs and 90 million cats in the United States.
“The opportunity for a potential obesity treatment represents a significant market because our research estimates the market for anti-obesity drugs for companion animals to be worth in excess US$200 million in the US alone,” Dr London said.
Obesity is even more of a problem in humans. According to the Centre of Disease Control and Prevention up to 60 per cent of Americans are overweight or obese and trends over the past 15 years have shown a 30 per cent increase; a trend that is being followed in many other countries.
About Stirling Products: Stirling is developing animal health products for global markets based on the use of R-salbutamol. Applications under development cover all livestock species (cattle, poultry, swine and sheep) and offer a safe and effective alternative to the use of antibiotics and steroidal hormones for animal growth promotion. An application for the treatment of heaves in horses and as an obesity treatment for companion animals and potentially for humans is also under development.
For All Media Enquiries Contact: Managing Director, Dr Calvin London on
T: (08) 9480 1480, M: 0400 204616.
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