‘Revelation’ canine epilepsy trial seeks new participants

15th March 2024
Industry News

Scientists have launched a fresh appeal for pet owners to take part in clinical trials of a potential new treatment for canine epilepsy.

Leaders of the METriC project, based at the University of Glasgow Small Animal Hospital, say they have seen some “very good responses” to the medication in initial tests.

And one couple who enrolled a pet in the programme said they believe it would not be alive without it.

One health

The latest appeal comes nearly a year after researchers first invited dog owners to join the project, which they believe may also offer the possibility of advancing epilepsy treatment for humans, too.

Although the condition is estimated to affect around 1% of all UK dogs, as many as a third of them do not respond to currently available medications.

The project, in which the university is collaborating with the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, is testing a medication called Ant-134, which is intended to silence a key molecule linked to the condition.

Officials have said initial tests in mice indicated long-term seizure control without side effects.

Good responses

Project lead Rodrigo Gutierrez Quintana said: “We are still in an early phase of the trial, but so far we have observed very good responses in some of the dogs treated with Ant-134.

“Our findings so far support continuation of the trial, and we are keen to continue recruiting dogs to further this important research.”

One of the dogs that has already received the medication is seven-year-old golden cavalier Oscar, owned by Rob and Dianne Hewgill from the Peak District, which has been enduring more frequent seizures.

Mrs Hewgill said the trial had made an “amazing” difference after they were made aware of it by their local vet.


‘Life changing’

Mrs Hewgill added: “It has been incredible to see Oscar – who is otherwise healthy – be back to being a normal and happy dog; it’s been a revelation.

“If we hadn’t got Oscar on the trial, he 100% wouldn’t be here, so we are very grateful for the opportunity and all the hard work the [University of] Glasgow team have put in to make the trial a reality – it’s been life changing.”

Any owners who are interested in becoming involved in the trial can email sbohvm-metric@glasgow.ac.uk for more details.


Credit to:  ‘Revelation’ canine epilepsy trial seeks new participants (Vet Times)

Vet Times. (2023).  ‘Revelation’ canine epilepsy trial seeks new participants [online]

Available at:  https://www.vettimes.co.uk/news/revelation-canine-epilepsy-trial-seeks-new-participants/