Category Archives: Cellmid

Brief Items of Interest, March 2017

Hair loss news first:

— The biggest news this past month is from Canada based Replicel (Japan based Shiseido’s partner), a company that I have covered dozens of times on this blog before. They just released 5-year safety data for “a high-dose of dermal sheath cup cells (DSCC) for patients with pattern baldness due to androgenetic alopecia”, which is basically their RCH-01 product. Since the injected cells are a patient’s own cells (i.e., autologous), the positive safety results are not surprising. In regards to efficacy (on a small sample size of 19 test patients –> 10 male and 9 female): “an overall stabilization of hair loss was observed among all the patients treated per protocol”. The best 10 respondents witnessed a sustained 4.2 percent increase over baseline hair density at 24 months after injection. Will be interesting to see their 5-year post injection efficacy results, since current data only covered 2 years post injection results.

The scientists involved theorize that rather than one large dose, many small doses spread over some time period will result in even superior outcomes. Results will also improve as they learn more about optimum depth of injections, make use of their new proprietary injection device, and conduct gene expression analysis. FYI — I am much more interested in Shiseido than in Replicel, but unfortunately the former never makes any announcements (at least not in English newspapers), while the latter has in recent months been making a significant announcement almost every single week.

— I covered Dr. Manabu Ohyama on this blog before. This week he published an important study that could help advance research into overcoming the difficulties associated with the preparation of trichogenic human dermal papilla cells (and, as a result, help in the bioengineering of hair follicles). The study is too technical for me to understand without devoting many hours of time. However, I found it quite interesting that in the report, they devote a large section to Minoxidil. Interesting quote regarding how Minoxidil works:

“Minoxidil is a clinically used hair growth promoter that enhances hair KC (keratinocyte) proliferation and activates hDP cells to induce growth factors. IGF-1 is among these growth factors, and has been shown to exhibit a potent hair elongation effect.”

— I have covered Australian company Cellmid a few times on this blog before, usually very briefly since I am a skeptic about any purported benefits of their hair growth product beyond modest regrowth at best. However, today I read that the company’s CEO Maria Halasz purchased 400,000 shares of Cellmid (at a cost of $11,200) and now holds a total of 27.3 million shares. I guess either she really believes in their hair loss product (which inhibits fibroblast growth factor-5 = FGF-5), or she believes that she will be able to sell her stake at a higher price irrespective of how well the product ends up doing. The company has made several important announcements on Twitter recently, and saw phenomenal sales growth in the last quarter of 2016.

Aclaris Therapeutics update (h/t commentator “J_van”).

— A great testimonial from Dr. Sanusi Umar’s hair transplant patient. Majority of grafts used were from body hair, especially from the beard region.

Interesting new video from hair transplant surgeon Dr. John Cole.

James Nesbitt and his hair transplants.

And now on to medical items of interest:

Terminal cancer remission in 1/3 of patients after new gene therapy treatment.

New blood test for early cancer detection.

Cambridge scientists create first self-developing embryo from stem-cells. In mice.

3D printed fully functional blood vessel network created via using an ultra-fast bioprinting system.

Interesting stem cell work from Japan/RIKEN (h/t commentator “baldings”).

Editas, Allergan and gene editing for eye diseases.

— Update on DIY biohacking:

Brief Items of Interest, November 2016

Hair loss news first:

— A very busy month for Aclaris Therapeutics. First the company updated its product pipeline page and added photos for each dermatological condition that the company’s various products are supposed to treat. Then they filed for Investigational New Drug Application (IND) for their oral alopecia areata product ATI-50001 with the US FDA. Then, on November 15th the company announced positive results for its topical seborrheic keratosis product (A-101) phase 3 clinical trials (webcast here); and finally, on November 16th the company announced a public offering of its common stock. If successful, the funds raised from this offering will partly be used towards research and trials for Aclaris’ JAK inhibitor products.

— In the past month, HairClone has added the well known Dr. Russell Knudsen, Dr. Robert Leonard and others to their clinic partner team.

— More good news for alopecia areata/totalis/ universalis sufferers. This time its two patients from Brazil who were taking JAK inhibitor toafacitinib.

— Dr. Christophe Guillemat updated his blog a week ago. I am still skeptical about his work, but there is a huge amount of interest. Someone commented in the past that he is not a doctor, but I am not sure. Also see my initial post on him.

— Sharp (Japan)’s plasmacluster ion technology promotes hair growth. Sounds hard to believe. The ending of the article about reduced dandruff and itching is more believable.

Cellmid (Australia) raises sufficient funds to start selling its Evolis line of FGF-5 inhibiting hair loss products in the US.

— Hairdresser Chad Gunter is very pleased with his PRP results from Dr. Laura Bennack. According to Dr. Bennack, “the most dramatic results are on men and women who are at the early stages of hair loss”.

— Yet another growth factor (human hepatocyte growth factor) linked to promoting hair growth. Also see my recent post on the various growth factors that benefit hair growth.

— Kerastem has more US clinics participating in its clinical trials.

— Missed an important study’s findings last month: BPH drugs such as finasteride and dutasteride (both are also used to combat hair loss) do not raise the risk of erectile dysfunction.

Wen hair care product lawsuit concludes in favor of customers.

And now on to medical items of interest:

Gene therapy in a box courtesy of the Fred Hutchinson cancer research center.

CRISPR gene editing tested in a person for the first time in China.

“Any idiot” can now create mutant CRISPR engineered mice.

Gene therapy to reverse certain types of genetically inherited blindness could be approved for use as soon as next year.

—  And thereafter, bionic superhuman eyes.

— Amazon’s Jeff Bezos partners with the Mayo Clinic and others to enter the anti-aging industry.

— Terminally ill 14 year old in the UK allowed to be cryogenically preserved. Also, a reality check.

— Samantha Payne’s Open Bionics allows anyone in the world to download and 3D print their own bionic limbs.

Brain implants allow paralyzed monkeys to walk. The Swiss scientist goes to China to conduct this work due to friendlier regulations. More here.

— First at-home brain implant allows paralyzed woman to communicate.

Genetically modified pig’s heart transplanted into a monkey in South Korea breaks prior world record. The monkey survives for 51 days. Pig’s hearts are thought to be a close match to the human heart. Very cruel animal experiments, but hopefully they help humans in future.

— Dr. Anthony Atala is still optimistic about printed organ replacements.