Category Archives: Replicel

Brief Items of Interest, January 2017

Hair loss news first:

— Replicel’s CEO provided a detailed 2017 forecast, and this was followed up by the release of an important PowerPoint presentation in which the company summarized 6-month results of their RCH-01 product (Note: they also mention finalizing 5-year safety data in the first quarter of 2017, which makes sense since they started initial clinical trials in 2012). Key current finding: “mean change in total hair density at 6-months = 6.1% vs 5.0% target“. 70 percent of responders saw a 14.3% average increase in density at 6-months. While they did not mention 12-month RCH-01 results, they do point out 12-month results from Finasteride (7-14% increase in hair density) and Minoxidil (8-16% increase in hair density) for comparison. Also of note, Replicel partner Shiseido’s Japanese clinical research findings are expected in 2018 along with a potential product launch in the same year.

— Aclaris Therapeutics made yet another presentation (pdf downloadable from their press releases page — I did not listen to the webcast), this time at the 35th Annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference. At the end of the report they mention that pre-clincial development is now underway for their topical ATI-50003 selective covalently binding JAK 3 inhibitor to treat androgenetic alopecia. However, nothing in the report mentions when they aim to start phase 1 clinical trials. I hope it will be before the end of 2017.

— Follicum announced patent approvals in Russia and in Japan. The company had earlier also announced that they were scheduled to complete the multiple dose part of their clinical phase I/IIa study in January 2017 at the prestigious Charité University Hospital in Berlin.

— Judging from the latest update from Fidia Farmaceutici (Italy), The Dr. Brotzu lotion will not come out as early as some people expected, and a lot of people on the forums got mad (but a few took it as a positive sign that Fidia is finally releasing dates even if ambiguous i.e., “development of the potential product candidate being completed by 2018“). Ever since I first wrote about Dr. Brotzu, I have not paid much attention to this product, but if you are inclined, go through the last 50 or so pages of this record breaking HLT thread and check out the various Italian hair loss forums out there.

— Also from Italy, some kind of PRP plus insulin type of treatment (hard to tell for sure after translation).

— Researchers identify how skin cells become hairy or sweaty during the embryonic stage of development. Actual study.

This guy got a hairpiece and over 2 million youtube views in the process. He is probably someone famous, but I did not feel like doing any background research or even watching most of the video.

And now on to medical items of interest:

— From a team led by the most famous hair loss researcher in the world Dr. George Cotsarelis (who has been at it for at least 20 years), comes a new study on how to heal wounds without leaving any residual scars. Key quote from Dr. Cotsarelis: “Essentially, we can manipulate wound healing so that it leads to skin regeneration rather than scarring. The secret is to regenerate hair follicles first. After that, the fat will regenerate in response to the signals from those follicles”. I have discussed the link between fat cells and hair cells many times on this blog, including in the last post on the arrector pili muscle. These latest findings were widely covered by the global media, with headlines such as “The End of Scars“. The Reddit thread on this blew up. However, as with all things Cotsarelis, headline grabbing findings, but one always gets the feeling that practical use will be at least a decade away unless other labs get in on the action.

Babies born without mothers (via embryos made from male skin cells) will come sooner than expected warn scientists. Surreal.

Designer babies: an ethical horror waiting to happen? I am all for it even if it turns out horrific.

Alzheimer’s drug “tideglusib” helps rotten teeth regenerate, reducing the need for fillings.

— Chinese company implants 3D prints blood vessels into monkeys.

Brief Items of Interest, October 2016

Hair loss news first:

Update: A day after I wrote this post, CNN covered JAK inhibitors in a new article (in a pleasant surprise, they also looked at the androgenetic alopecia — AGA — angle).  Usually, all these articles on JAK inhibitors only look at alopecia areata (AA).  Yet again, Dr. Christiano says she is optimistic that JAKs could work on AGA patients (but only in a topical form).  Dr. Brett King is not optimistic, but he is still testing it out (in a lotion form) on his AA patients (probably the ones who also have AGA).  In the above article, the one AA patient who they show with regrown hair after being on oral JAK inhibitors did not regrow hair that he lost to AGA, although it is impossible to tell whether he did not regrow 100 percent of his AGA hair loss or not.  In any event, we will only know for sure about this once they test topical JAK inhibitors out so people should not get so emotional about this subject each time there are new developments.  You should also not try to test your own topical version as even the experts are having a hard time developing the appropriate version.  According to Dr. Christiano:

“Though she thinks men might have the same success with an ointment, she said the trick is that it has to penetrate properly. Compared with the paper-thin skin of mice, human skin is “much thicker, and it’s oily, and it’s deep, and it’s got a fat layer — so there’s a lot to think about when making a good topical formula.”

It is well worth watching the video in the above article just to see the funky haired mice.

— In a first, myself as well as all of this blog’s commentators missed the important International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS)’s 24th Annual Congress that ran from September 28th through October 1st in Las Vegas.  I did not even see any threads on the conference in any of the hair loss forums out there, which is strange.  I usually cover the 2-3 most important hair loss related conferences in the world every year in separate posts, but this time I forgot to do so.  You can find the detailed ISHRS 24th Congress final program guide here.  As usual, there were way too many interesting presentations.  For our purposes, the most important ones were:

  • Dr. Angela Christiano: “JAK Inhibitors, Hair Regeneration and
    Genetic Testing”.
  • Dr. Pantelis Rompolas: “Potency and Contribution of Stem Cells to Hair Follicle Regeneration”.
  • Dr. Rodney Sinclair: “Advancing our Understanding of the Biology of Androgenetic Alopecia and Changing the way we use Minoxidil to Treat it”.
  • Dr. Angela Christiano and Dr. Ken Washenik led a discussion titled “Biotechnology in Hair Regeneration”.

On Twitter, Dr. Alan Bauman told me that while Dr. Christiano did not provide any data on JAK inhibitors for androgenetic alopecia (AGA), she did hint that JAK inhibitors seem to stimulate the anagen phase of the hair growth cycle.  Fingers crossed as usual when it comes to this subject.  I was surprised at the number of presentations on body hair transplants (BHT), with Dr. Arvind Poswal discussing long-term ten-year plus results of his BHT patients.  Also surprising were the number of presentations on platelet-rich plasma (PRP).

— In stark contrast to the above omission, in the past week at least 10 (!) people either commented under a blog post or e-mailed me about cosmetics behemoth L’oréal (France) and Poietis (France) partnering to bioprint hair follicles via laser. This news item was extremely well covered across the global media and there are hundreds of articles on the internet about this interesting subject matter.  The end goal “holy grail” of this research will be to implant the new hair follicles into balding regions.  Below is the official company video outlining the technology and the goals behind this partnership:

— Unfortunately, it seems like Replicel has not fulfilled the contractual obligations of its partnership with Shiseido (although the former disputes this allegation).  In any event, it is unlikely that this will stop Shiseido from proceeding with its plans.

Cassiopeia (Italy) updates us on its topical anti-androgen product Breezula (formerly called CB-03-01).  Also see my past post on this subject.  It seems like even if phase 2 and phase 3 clinical trials succeed, this product will not come to market before 2021.

— Samumed’s Dr. Osman Kibar’s presentation (a small part of it is on hair loss) at a recent conference organized by the UK’s Royal Society of Medicine.  He received many compliments on Twitter for his presentation.

Cellmid has better than expected quarterly sales of its FGF5 inhibiting product Evolis in Australia.

Kerastem completes enrollment in Phase 2 clinical trials.

Spex has a brand new updated website, which is worth a visit.

— Former baseball great Jose Canseco just announced today that he will get a hair transplant with Dr. Parsa Mohebi next week.

— Sportscaster Joe Buck’s hair transplant addiction nearly cost him his voice and his career.

The benefits of going bald.  I would much rather have none of those benefits and hair instead:-)

Men’s vanity involves hair transplants.

And now on to medical items of interest:

— The National Geographic is a highly reputable magazine so I believe them when they say that ending blindness is no longer just a dream.

Rapamycin could make your dog (and maybe humans too) live longer.

Microsoft aims to cure cancer in ten years.  In the end it is just a programming error.

— A very interesting new endeavor: “Human Cell Atlas project aims to map the human body’s 35 trillion cells“.

Teeth regeneration advances.

Building a bionic spine.

3D printing continues to revolutionize the field of prosthetic limbs.

First “three person baby” born in Mexico (doctors went there from the USA so as to escape strict regulations).  Baby’s parents were Jordanian.  Medicine will hopefully soon become very multinational.

Stem cells regenerate damaged monkey heart.

— Yet more evidence that turmeric is very good for you, but only when added to food that is then cooked.

Endurance training causes positive genetic changes.

— Not sure if I believe half the stuff in the below video, but it is well presented with 100 percent thumbs up likes thus far: K. Comella: “Reversing Aging with Stem Cells”: