*RenAvast  (FROM tANYA'S SITE)
*
------------------------------

RenAvast <http://renavast.com> was launched in the USA in summer 2011 and
contains something called Avastamine (AB070597). Avastamine is said to
consist of "naturally occurring biomolecules", which apparently means it is
a proprietary mix of seven specific amino acids or peptides, though they do
not state which ones.



Amino acids are the components of protein. Peptides are the molecules
formed when two or more amino acids are joined together. There are 23 amino
acids which cats need, and they can manufacture twelve of these themselves,
but the other eleven must be obtained from food.
Taurine<http://www.felinecrf.org/nutritional_requirements.htm#taurine>is
one example of an amino acid which cats must obtain from food.
Virginia-Maryland
Regional College of Veterinary
Medicine<http://www.vetmed.vt.edu/vth/sa/clin/cp_handouts/Nutrition_Adult_Cat.pdf>
explains
more about cats and amino acids.



RenAvast is marketed as a dietary supplement. Dietary supplements do not
need US Food and Drug Administration approval but the manufacturers make
the bold claims that RenAvast "can halt the progression of chronic renal
failure in cats" and that "unlike other products and drugs, RenAvast does
not treat the symptoms of renal failure, it treats the cause." The
FDA<http://www.fda.gov/Food/DietarySupplements/ConsumerInformation/ucm110417.htm#regulate>
states
that "a product sold as a dietary supplement and promoted on its label or
in labeling as a treatment, prevention or cure for a specific disease or
condition would be considered an unapproved - and thus illegal - drug."



RenAvast is being widely promoted online. The marketing literature for
RenAvast focuses heavily on a study published online by the manufacturers
(rather than in a veterinary journal), AB070597 and its effect on declining
renal function in
felines<http://adminpilot.s3.amazonaws.com/renavast/files/2011/07/renavast-pdf.pdf>(2007)
Archer J, published online. This reports on 19 cats who were given
RenAvast over a two year period. Cats joined and left the study during this
period so it is not known over how long a period the results for individual
cats were measured. No cats in the trial were on sub-Q fluids or a
prescription diet, but it is not known if they were receiving other
treatments such as phosphorus binders or Azodyl. Many of the cats were in
early stage CKD (Stage 2 of IRIS), and it is not uncommon for cats in this
stage to survive for years.



An unrelated study, Plasma amino acid profiles in cats with naturally
acquired chronic renal failure
<http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9918157> (1999)
Goldstein RE, Marks SL, Cowgill LD, Kass PH & Rogers QR *American Journal
of Veterinary Research* *60(1)* pp109-13, found that CKD cats in all stages
of the disease had lower levels of amino acids than healthy cats. However,
they concluded "the magnitude of these changes is mild and of little
clinical relevance." This is an older study, and it might eventually be
shown that supplementary amino acids are in fact helpful to CKD cats, but
currently there is no evidence that RenAvast is the miracle cure it claims
to be.



What do I think of RenAvast? My hunch is that RenAvast contains widely
available and inexpensive unpatented amino acids packaged together and
subjected to some clever marketing. If it only contains amino acids and
peptides, it is probably not going to do any harm, but without knowing
exactly what it contains, I cannot say for sure. It might be a good
product, it might not, but it is unlikely to be as effective as its
manufacturers claim, and it is certainly not cheap at over US$30 a month.



Based on the information currently available, I would save my money  and
put it towards more proven treatments than RenAvast.
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