The Genetic Link

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Article by: Sanna Abbasi, PhD

Loyal: pursuing longer, healthier lives for dogs


Extending dog lifespan is a shared aspiration for many pet owners. A longer, healthier life for your dog means more years of shared experiences, laughter, and companionship. The commitment to enhancing a dog's longevity often translates into a stronger focus on preventative healthcare, nutrition, and overall well-being, all of which foster a higher quality of life for pets. DNA Genotek Inc. is pleased to be working with Loyal on their research into extending dog lifespan and healthspan. 

Helping dogs live longer, healthier lives 

Loyal is a clinical-stage biotechnology company based in San Francisco developing drugs intended to extend the healthy lifespan of dogs. Loyal was founded by Celine Halioua, CEO, who is passionate about dogs and has a keen interest in researching longevity. In their pursuit of longer and healthier lives for dogs, Loyal is developing three prescription drugs for FDA approval: LOY-001, LOY-002, and LOY-003. 

  1. LOY-001 is intended for large- and giant-breed dogs which tend to have shorter lifespans than smaller dogs. As a result of selective breeding, large dogs produce more IGF-1 hormone than required post-maturity. This is believed to reduce their lifespan relative to smaller dogs. LOY-001 addresses this overexpression in adult dogs with the aim of reducing age-associated diseases and extending healthy lifespan. LOY-001 is a long-acting injection delivered by veterinarians every three to six months.
  2.  LOY-002 is intended for senior dogs of at least 14 lb. LOY-002 is believed to improve metabolic health with the aim of reducing age-associated disease and extending healthy lifespan, so dogs live longer and maintain their quality of life as they age. As a follow-up to their ongoing research on LOY-002, Loyal has launched a nationwide clinical study called STAY, designed to provide efficacy and field safety data to support FDA approval. 
  3. LOY-003, like LOY-001, is also intended for large- and giant-breed dogs and targets the same IGF-1 overexpression while being designed as a daily pill.  

Loyal for Dogs LogoLoyal expects that LOY-002 will be available for prescription in early 2025, with LOY-001 and LOY-003 launching in late 2026. 


Throughout their research journey, Loyal has extracted DNA for sequencing from canine saliva samples collected by pet owners. To facilitate the collection of these biological samples, Loyal relies on DNA Genotek Inc., a subsidiary of OraSure Technologies Inc., for their non-invasive, mailable animal saliva collection device.

Loyal for Dogs ImagePhoto courtesy of Loyal.

Simplifying the collection of animal saliva samples  

DNA Genotek is dedicated to advancing precision health in both animals and humans. Offering a diverse portfolio of products aimed at non-invasive and convenient biological sample collection, DNA Genotek facilitates numerous research and clinical studies, including those advancing the fields of animal and human genomics.  


For the collection of DNA from animal saliva, DNA Genotek offers the PERFORMAgene™ (PG-100) collection device. This device offers a streamlined and non-invasive method for obtaining high-quality DNA samples from animals, including dogs. The PERFORMAgene™ device is designed to simplify the collection of samples for genetic analysis on health and ancestry insights. With its user-friendly design, pet owners can effortlessly collect saliva samples, eliminating the need for more invasive or stressful procedures. This device ensures the preservation of DNA integrity, making it a reliable tool for obtaining accurate genetic information. Dogs enrolled in ongoing clinical studies by Loyal can rest assured about the ease of use and the non-abrasiveness of the sponge-tipped collection device.  

PERFORMAgene - 2024

Concluding remarks 

Delving into dog aging research and striving to extend pet longevity carries substantial importance for the broader scope of veterinary science and the relationships between humans and their dogs. Loyal, with the support of DNA Genotek’s PERFORMAgene™ device, advances their pursuit of longer, healthier lives for our canine companions.  


The pioneering work being done by Loyal, to our knowledge, represents the first longevity clinical study design to be supported by the FDA. In other words, this is the first time the FDA has accepted a clinical study that intends to show a drug being used to extend lifespan and health, instead of demonstrating efficacy against a disease.

DNA Genotek is proud to offer devices and services that support the research and development of products for companion animals. To learn more about exploring the PERFORMAgene saliva collection device in your workflow, visit our website or send us an email at

Collect DNA or RNA from saliva.


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