Probiotic targets bad doggy breath

CLAIRE ROGERS
Last updated 14:34 15/10/2012

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Good news dog owners. Your pooch's bad breath may be soon be a thing of the past thanks to a halitosis-fighting probiotic developed by Dunedin biotech firm Blis Technologies.

The NZX-listed company said it had successfully completed a pilot study with the help of the Otago Polytechnic School of Veterinary Nursing that showed its Blis K12 probiotic, already proven to inhibit the bacteria causing severe bad breath in humans, could have a similar effect with dogs.

Studies by Blis had suggested the probiotic inhibited about 50 per cent of the various bacteria in a dog's mouth.

Programme leader Dr John Hale said the results from the trial were encouraging enough to begin a longer, extended dosing trial in dogs which kicked off in Dunedin last week.

Blis said bacterial infections of the teeth and gums in dogs and cats were an increasing problem, according to the veterinary industry.

While Blis Technologies was currently just focused on bacterial bad breath in dogs, the company could eventually expand its research into the animal periodontal area.

"This research represents further evidence that the BLIS K12 probiotic is a highly versatile organism and plays an important role in the Company's commercial strategy," said Dr Barry Richardson, chief executive of BLIS Technologies.

"We believe that this early data points to a beneficial effect in dogs and we would expect further studies to confirm this effect before commercialisation in the animal market."

The company said last month it was again on the hunt for extra capital after revising down its guidance for the 2013 fiscal year to a loss of $1.3 million.

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