Category Archives: Claire Higgins

Hair Loss News Items of Interest

Hair loss news first:

— I just found out that Devon Grimmé from Follicept unexpectedly passed away today at the very young age of 27. He made many helpful comments over the past year while testing Follicept’s product on himself. Also see my post from earlier this year regarding Follicept.

— Kythera submitted an Investigational New Drug Application (IND) to the US FDA for KYTH-105 (Setipiprant).

— The renowned Dr. Claire Higgins recently made a great presentation on re-engineering the human body. I found her team’s experiment and findings on hair growing dermis transplanted under non-hair growing epidermis growing hair through the previously barren epidermis very interesting. In contrast, the hair growing epidermis transplanted over non-hair growing dermis ceased growing hair.

It makes obvious sense of course since the critical dermal papilla cells are in the dermis that lies below the epidermis. The most interesting part of the below video, however, is at 33:47 during the question and answer segment where she mentions how people are now using “rollers with spikes on them” to stimulate dermal papilla cells.

I have mentioned dermarolling and microneedling based intentional wounding on this blog before. It is great to see that even Dr. Higgins thinks there is some legitimacy to this crude concept. Unfortunately, the wounding has to be done at a very precise level, manner, frequency and duration. So most  hair loss forum members who are doing this are unlikely to be doing it correctly. I can fathom a day in the near future when we will go to clinics to get professionals to do this for us. i.e., we will pay to have someone injure our scalps and bleed us, all in the name of more hair.

— On rare occasions, I promote someone or some idea on this blog that I do not fully understand or even trust. The only reason I do this is because my intuition tells me that there is some serious potential behind this person or idea even if some of the subject matter goes above me. If a person is extremely passionate about his idea, is also very intelligent (especially when it comes to hair, chemistry and biology) and is well spoken, I get an urge to post about him or her.

Getting back to the subject matter, this new Swisstemples hair loss treatment blog is extremely interesting and the author has also e-mailed me a few times. He does not sell anything directly as far as I can tell. I would probably not buy anything from sites that he starts to recommend, since some of these products may not be 100 percent safe or thoroughly tested. I am more cautious than most when it comes to taking drugs, especially oral drugs.

A lot of guys are participating in “group buys” of products from strangers in China and Eastern Europe. Absolutely foolish in my opinion, but perhaps the fools will have full heads of hair while I continue losing ground on Finasteride. I only posted this link for the entertainment and educational value. I will not participate in these group buys.

–Very surprising that the BBC had such a speculative article: can a bang on the head lead to hair loss?

Spironolactone is a potentially miraculous product for some, and also very cheap. Besides helping with hair loss, it can even reduce persistent high blood pressure.

— I mentioned Arfy and Ernie Primeau in a post from 2013, and just like the latter, the former is back again with a vengeance. More here and here. The hair loss world is quite something. Why on earth would one want to go watch a movie on a weekend night when one can find far better plots on hair loss forums?

— An interesting new video on balding.

And now on to medical items of interest:

Amazing videos on bioengineered organs.

— At first they were blaming the Chinese for moving too fast, but now they want to do it themselves. Western scientists seek permission to genetically modify embryos.

— George Church is a brilliant scientists and he is all for genetic engineering.

Spanish cancer patient receives 3D printed ribs from an Australian company in a world first surgery.

Getting closer to an invisibility cloak. Perhaps a future hair loss treatment may involve visuals…i.e., we will have others (and the mirror and the camera) see us as we want them to?

DARPA brain interfaces coming.

Dr. Claire Higgins and her Hair Research

On May 20, I made a post about UK-based Dr. Aaron Gardner because of his presentation at the WCHR2014. Dr. Gardner, who works under Dr. Colin Jahoda at Durham university, has also worked under Dr. Claire Higgins.

Dr. Claire Higgins and Higgins Lab

Dr. Jahoda and Dr. Higgins are probably the two foremost hair loss researchers in the UK, and among the world’s ten most cited ones. Dr. Higgins and her team are based at Imperial College (UK) via the Higgins Lab.

In the Linkedin profile for Dr. Higgins, you can scroll down all the way to see various summaries of her extensive prior hair loss related research. In recent years, both Dr. Jahoda and Dr. Higgins have become well known for their work related to 3D culturing/3D spheroids. In Dr. Higgins own words:

“Human dermal papilla cells, when grown as spheroids, are capable of inducing de novo hair follicles in human skin.”

In 2013, Dr. Higgins was a co-author of an important article on 3D culturing of dermal papilla cells.

Below are two videos of Dr. Higgins that are well worth watching. The first is courtesy of blog reader Desmond yet again. The second, surprisingly, is from a Latino news channel’s daily science, health and technology segment. I am impressed by Dr. Higgins’ knowledge and communication skills. Perhaps the wonderful accent biases my opinion a bit.