Category Archives: FOXO4

Brief Items of Interest, June 2017

Hair loss news first:

— Apparently, there is a small subgroup of people who suffer from hair loss due to a condition called hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (HED), which also adversely impacts nails, teeth and sweat glands. While studying this condition, the well known Dr. Sarah Millar and her team at the University of Pennsylvania recently found that “lower levels of Wnt10A may contribute to male pattern baldness in some individuals”. Later, they go on to state that “small molecule drugs that activate the beta-catenin pathway downstream of Wnt10A could potentially be used to treat hair thinning and palm and sole skin defects” in some patients suffering from male pattern hair loss. I have covered Wnt signaling and various associated proteins and genes (especially Wnt10b) a number of time on this blog in the past when relevant to hair growth, but it seems like this is the first post that has covered Wnt10a.

— Someone from the Netherlands emailed me yesterday with an interesting new story on a well known Dutch news site about an American guy named Darren Moore who is testing FOXO4-DR to regrow his hair. This self-experimenter’s website with frequent updates is here and he also has his before and after scalp photos on there. For more about the FOXO4 peptide and its killing of senescent cells, see my recent post on that subject. The Netherlands based researcher (Dr. Peter de Keizer) who did that groundbreaking work has warned people about the above experiment and its possible dangers in the Dutch newspaper article that I linked to at the beginning of this paragraph.

Besides the health ramifications, I am obviously very skeptical of one-off anecdotal reports, even though I do mention them if interesting. Note that Mr. Moore’s site has two links from where to purchase FOX-O4 from, but I would not recommend getting the product. It is extremely expensive and potentially highly dangerous as elaborated by Dr. Keizer (and worth repeating again). I would also like to first make sure that Mr. Moore is in no way affiliated with the websites that sell this product before taking him more seriously. Having said all that, I am now probably going to eagerly anticipate his diary updates over the next several months:-) I like that he posted a photo of himself with Liz Parrish, another self-experimenter that I have covered on this blog several times before.

Samumed continues to garner great publicity. They must surely be the most successful hair loss cure focused company of all time when it comes to getting media attention? Their big coup came last year via a cover page on Forbes magazine with some great photos such as the below inside:

— Like last year, Aclaris Therapeutics is presenting at various investor conferences and lets all of us see their slides and listen to their audio after registration. This time I have not listened to any live or recorded audio as yet (I waited for 30 mins on one day, but it never started at the announced time). For those who are patient, it is always worth hearing the audio out till the end, when attendees often get to ask questions. In their latest slides, Aclaris still maintains that are doing pre-clinical work related to topical JAK inhibitors for androgenetic alopecia. No announcements on when they will start phase 1 trials as yet.

— Wasabi found to benefit hair growth.

Baldness, how close are we to a cure? Not a bad effort, since most such articles are highly inaccurate and badly researched. Nevertheless, the author does not even mention the leading prospects for a cure or treatment such as Follica, Histogen, Replicel/Shiseido, Samumed and Tsuji.

New ADSC and hair growth study from Japan.

And now on to medical items of interest:

— Limitless lab-grown blood tantalizingly close.

— A drug that creates a real sun-tan (and subsequently, protects against skin cancer, rates of which have been rising rapidly).

— 3-person babies for older women having trouble getting pregnant.

— Progress in the cure for multiple sclerosis, a very debilitating auto-immune condition.

Defibrillator carrying drones.

Huge Week for Anti-Aging Research in Mice (with Possible Fur Growth Benefits)

I have covered anti-aging research on this blog a few times in the past: partly because aging reversal can often imply hair loss reversal; and partly because I also cover medical items of interest once a month. This week was one of the best ever in anti-aging research, especially for mice (and their fur). A number of people have posted links about some of the below developments in the last post (with special thanks to commentator “Netshed” who was especially prolific), and several people have also e-mailed me relevant links.

Senescent Cell Destruction Results in More Youthful Mice

For many years, scientists have known that the quantity of senescent cells (i.e., aged cells that have stopped dividing) correlates with aging in humans. More recently, research has suggested that senescent cells also damage other nearby healthy cells. So, not surprisingly, some scientists have conducted experiments to see if removing these old senescent cells (ideally, without damaging other normally functioning cells) reversed signs of aging and increased life expectancy. A few experiments in mice have suggested the answer to be in the affirmative (e.g., this one from 2011 and this one from 2015). There is now even a name (senolytics) for the class of drugs that can kill senescent cells.

This week, a groundbreaking study (led by Dr. Peter de Keizer) from the Netherlands found that a drug that they developed to kill senescent cells causes dramatic improvements in mice health and essentially reverses their aging. For our purposes, the most important thing was that these mice saw regrowth of healthy fur/hair! Key photos below (green arrows on rightmost column show hair regrowth in almost all mice after FOXO4 peptide ingestion):

Mice hair regrowth from destroying senescent cells

The team behind this research plans clinical trials in humans in the near future. There are literally 100s of articles on this development, and various scientists from other countries have been quoted as saying that this development is potentially a huge breakthrough in anti-aging science. Two contrasting sources here and here.

Addendum 1: In case anyone got the wrong idea from my recent post on obesity perhaps benefiting scalp hair, this study is worth reading.

Addendum 2: Specially for Mr. “nasa_rs”: “JAK inhibition alleviates the cellular senescence-associated secretory phenotype and frailty in old age“.

David Sinclair Update

I have covered anti-aging Harvard-based Australian researcher Dr. David Sinclair (widely associated with resveratrol) once on this blog before here. In a new paper, him and his colleagues have found a way to protect a mouse’s DNA from damage via boosting NAD+ levels, and they are supposedly ready to test it in people. Dr. Sinclair in some ways is the Dr. George Cotsarelis or Dr. Ken Washenik of the anti-aging world. You decide what I mean by the above sentence.

Note that there is also a Dr. Rodney Sinclair who is a famous hair loss researcher that I have covered a few times on this blog. He is also from Australia.

Young Blood Without the Need for a Donor

In recent years, a number of scientists have been researching the fascinating subject of whether older people can be rejuvenated by the infusion of blood from the young! Billionaire Peter Thiel is especially interested. However, one major problem with this strategy for older non-wealthy people is that there might not be enough young healthy donors with the correct blood type willing to donate at reasonable prices. However, this week, scientists from Germany published research that could be a workaround for this problem. Just make old blood young again (in mice) via the addition of osteopontin protein and forget about the young. After all, “youth is wasted on the young”.