Category Archives: Latanoprost

New Latanoprost for Hair Growth Trial

In my old posts on Bimatoprost, I mentioned the related glaucoma drug Latanoprost. While Bimatoprost is a synthetic prostamide analog, Latanoprost is a prostaglandin F2α analog and it prolongs the anagen phase of the hair cycle via the prostaglandin effect.

Latanoprost Hair Growth
Latanoprost for hair growth trial at Sinclair Clinic. Source: 9News Australia.

Latanoprost for Hair Growth Trial

The renowned Dr. Rodney Sinclair and his Melbourne based Sinclair Dermatology clinic will test Latanoprost eye drops for hair growth in a new clinical trial. I have covered Dr. Sinclair numerous times on this blog, including in my post on “Oral Minoxidil“. Most recently, his clinic has taken the lead in testing Hope Medicine’s HMI-115 prolactin receptor antibody.

Latanoprost (sold under the brand name Xalatan) is a medication that is used to treat increased pressure inside the eye. This includes ocular hypertension and glaucoma. It was approved for medical use in the US in 1996. However, it is not FDA approved to treat hair loss. One of the noted side effects of Latanoprost (off-label use) is an increase in the thickness and density of eyelash hair.

However, this type of cosmetic use near the eye region can come with serious side effects in the eyes. Moreover:

“The overgrowth of lashes may result in lash misdirection and distichiasis, and an extra row of hair at the aperture of the meibomian glands that can result in eye irritation.”

Prostaglandin Analogs

Latanoprost is a prostaglandin F2α (PGF2α or PGF2a) analog, similar to Travoprost and Tafluprost. A 2012 German study of 16 men with androgenetic alopecia found that Latanoprost significantly increased hair density (terminal and vellus hairs) at 24 weeks compared with baseline. A 2015 review concluded that the most promising alternative clinical uses of prostaglandin F2α analogs beyond the eyelashes include: androgenic alopecia; chemotherapy-induced alopecia; and alopecia areata.

Even over 20 years ago, a detailed 2002 study on stump-tailed macaques found that Latanoprost had a potent positive effect on hair growth. Note that Aneira Pharma is developing a hair loss product that will likely contain Latanoprost, Cyclosporine and Minoxidil.

Also, Dermaliq Therapeutics (US) is working on a topical Prostaglandin F2α analogue product for male pattern baldness. I covered the company in my post on increasing PGE2 and PGF2α for hair growth. On a related note, make sure to read my posts on PGD2 inhibition for hair growth.

Misplaced Skepticism

Most readers are skeptical about existing drugs such as Bimatoprost and Latanoprost doing much for scalp hair growth. However, in my opinion, we should welcome every new mechanism of targeting hair regrowth. Even if each one is “only” as effective as the tried and tested topical Minoxidil.

Some products might just make existing hair thicker rather than re-grow lost hair. However, this thicker scalp hair is then less easily destructible by the ravages of dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Moreover, if we have many different alternatives to tackle hair loss, the chances are that each of us can find at least three products that cause him or her no side effects.

Ultimately, a cocktail of topical products could multiply the hair growth effect. A number of new companies that sell topical finasteride are also including Latanoprost as part of the ingredients. Delivery mechanisms continue to improve, resulting in superior product absorption and penetration into the scalp.

Aneira Pharma gets $25 million from Valkyrie Group

A new hair loss company named Aneira Pharma has come to my attention thanks to reader “James”.

Aneira PharmaSeveral days ago, it was announced that Valkyrie Group will invest $25 million in Aneira Pharma. This is a substantial amount of money to invest in a hair loss startup. For comparison, RIKEN is only asking for $4.8 million and has already been conducting hair loss research for several decades.

Update: Valkyrie’s CEO answered some questions in the comments.

Valkyrie’s news page also has this story. The before and after photos on Aneira’s site are very impressive for a topical hair loss product. The current name for this product is ANR-001. Aneira has yet to start Phase 1 clinical trials in humans. However, based on the likely already-in-use ingredients in its hair loss product, I am hoping that future trials can proceed fast.

Aneira Pharma’s Hair Loss Patent

One of the members of our hair loss chat found the likely patent behind Aneira Pharma’s hair loss product. The inventor, John Wurst, is also Aneira’s founder, president and CEO. The patent was published in February 2021.

Among the extensive list of ingredients listed in the patent, the most frequently mentioned ones that will likely be in the product include:

  • Prostaglandin analogues, with Latanoprost being a certainty. Also possibly included will be Travoprost. Make sure to see my past posts on Bimatoprost, which caused a lot of excitement in the hair loss world a few years ago. Latanoprost and Travoprost are examples of prostaglandin F2α analogs. Bimatoprost is a prostamide F2α analog. All three of these products are used to treat glaucoma and reduce pressure in the eye. Bimatoprost (via the brand Latisse) has also been widely used in the cosmetic world to make eyelashes grow longer. Interestingly, John Wurst served as lead patent attorney for Latisse and other hair growth products in the past.
Latanoprost for Hair Growth
Latanoprost for hair loss presentation at the EHRS Conference in 2018.
  • Cyclosporine. See my past posts on Cyclosporine as well as on WAY-316606. A company named Rivertown Therapeutics was also using Cyclosporine in its hair loss product, but ended up shutting down last year.
  • Minoxidil. See my post on how Minoxidil works to treat hair loss. As of 2021, Minoxidil is still one of only two drugs ever approved by the US FDA to treat male and female pattern hair loss. With the other being Finasteride.

Interestingly, Aneira’s product will also make hair darker.

The word “Finasteride” also makes a number of appearances in the earlier mentioned patent. I hope they add topical finasteride into the mix too.