Category Archives: Durham University

Dr. Claire Higgins

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 in the UK, has also worked under Dr. Claire Higgins.

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.  In the Linkedin profile for Dr. Higgins that I just linked to her name above, 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 spheroids/3D culturing.  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.

Dr. Aaron Gardner

Dr. Aaron Gardner is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences at Durham University in the UK.  He has worked with the famous Dr. Colin Jahoda and co-authored numerous papers related to hair loss with him and with other scientists in the last four years.

At the just ended World Congress for Hair Research in South Korea (WCHR2014) Dr. Gardner had an interesting presentation that he has made available online.  I have enlarged his two posters and link them below, although it is still hard to read them and you might need to left click each one to enlarge further.  The first poster is largely related to wound healing, while the second is more closely related to hair loss (3D spheres and follicle neogenesis).

Dr. Aaron Gardner presentation 1

Dr. Aaron Gardner presentation 2

Dr. Gardner posted these presentation on the Bald Truth forums, and quite surprisingly has started to actively participate on the forums too!  I am hopeful and optimistic that the younger hair loss researchers in the world such as Dr. Gardner who have witnessed the birth and subsequent exponential growth in social media participate more frequently on the forums unlike virtually all of their older counterparts.

Bald Truth forum member “joachim” has created a Q&A thread where Dr. Gardner responds to questions by forum members.  If you are not already registered on those forums, I would advise you to do so, and then you can search for all the posts made by user “agardner.”

In other news:

— It seems like Dr. Nigam’s scheduled presentation was cancelled in South Korea, and that avenue was a false front all along :-((  I am still hopeful that any new cure will be tested in India and/or other Asian countries due to much less government interference and regulation.

— I am also having doubts about Dr. Cotsarelis’ work and future potential.

— On a much more positive front, Dr. Gardner made a post where he discredited the “cure is five years away” concept, and I got a sense that he was implying that a cure could come much sooner as it is only a matter of time (less than 5 years) before one of the numerous teams working on a hair loss cure makes a major breakthrough.

Stay tuned for more news on the WCHR2014 conference once Desmond posts videos and other updates from his trip to South Korea.  Desmond’s trip was very fruitful (see my earlier post about raising funds for his trip on this blog) and a great forum crowdfunding success story.