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CAMBRIDGE, Mass., July 26, 2016 – Stemming from research from the Forsyth Institute, a new animal health company, AIAH Therapeutics, LLC, will provide veterinarians and pet owners with a new technology for reducing inflammation and regenerating lost dental tissues in animals suffering from gum disease. AIAH Therapeutics was co-founded by Tom Van Dyke, Vice President for Clinical and Translational Research at Forsyth together with Charles Serhan, Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Pain Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and principals from Oriole Animal Health, a leading animal health advisory and Development Company. The company will deliver new therapies for treating and preventing oral disease using natural active regulators of inflammation, which can be administered either at home through food supplements or at the veterinarian’s office.  

Van Dyke’s research at Forsyth has focused on the development of novel therapeutics for oral diseases by exploiting natural biological processes. He and Serhan are internationally known for their work on a new family of active resolvers of inflammation produced by our own bodies, termed “resolvins” and “lipoxins” that were discovered by Serhan. Van Dyke’s research suggests that controlling inflammation in oral wound healing is essential for regenerating lost tissue and preventing scarring.  Lipoxin and resolvin compounds have already been tested in various animal species, with promising results.

“This new technology will be a valuable therapeutic that promotes the growth of substantial amounts of new tissues – like bone – not seen with any current veterinary treatments or available food additives,” said Tom Van Dyke. “Treatments can be administered at a veterinary office or clinic during routine check-ups, during teeth cleaning or oral surgery procedures, or even at home using either a daily food additive or oral hygiene treats.”

Periodontal disease is the most common of all diseases in cats and dogs, causing bad breath, tartar build-up, and loss of teeth. It can also be linked to problems that spread to the kidneys, liver, and heart. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), eighty percent of dogs and seventy percent of cats show signs of gum disease by the age of three. The average amount spent to treat dental-related disease totals about $1,300 per visit, and overall, veterinary care expenditures in the U.S. totaled $15.4 billion in 2015, according to the American Pet Products Association. Through both preventative and corrective treatments, AIAH Therapeutics will provide pet owners and veterinarians with a new arsenal of relatively low-cost treatment regimens to improve overall pet health.

Van Dyke and colleagues at Forsyth found that the addition of lipoxins to the diet prevented soft tissue and bone degradation, while just one application of lipoxin showed bone regeneration two months after periodontal surgery. Uncontrolled inflammation plays a major part in oral and systemic diseases, including gum disease, diabetes and heart disease, and control via lipoxins and resolvins has potential for treating a wide range of diseases and/injuries in both humans and animals.