Category Archives: Senescent Cells

FOXO4, Anti-Aging and Hair Growth

I previously wrote about FOXO4 in a post in March 2017 that covered Dr. Peter de Keizer and his groundbreaking findings. In brief, interference via a newly created modified FOXO4-p53 peptide caused senescent cell apoptosis (death) in mice. Subsequently, the mice became younger and healthier. Most importantly, the mice regrew thick and robust coats of fur.

In the above study, the FOXO4 peptide was created in a D-retro inverso (DRI)-isoform conformation and named FOXO4-DRI. The anti-aging and hair growth related findings of this work were widely covered by the media in 2017. Dr. Keizer thereafter started his own biotech company called Cleara Biotech.

Senescent Cells

I have written about senescent cells (undesirable) and senolytics a number of times in the past. In an interview with Dr. de Keizer, he mentioned the following:

“If you remove the senescent cells, it means the (neighboring) stem cells can differentiate again, supporting tissue rejuvenation.”

Also make sure to read my related post on NAD, NMN and Resveratrol for aging reversal.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment

Earlier this week, an anti-aging breakthrough from Israel was widely covered in the media. Apparently, giving pure oxygen to older people while in a hyperbaric chamber increased the length of their telomeres by 20 percent. More details here.

This development is impressive because it resulted in both:

  1. Telomere Elongation. And:
  2. Senescent Cell Reduction.

There have already been other methods via which people have increased their telomere length, including TA-65, exercise, diet and caloric restriction. However, this new hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT) protocol led to elongation of telomeres at higher rates in comparison to existing interventions.

Using FOXO4 for Hair Growth

I was not planning to write about the above findings from last week as there did not seem to be any connection to hair loss.

However, earlier today, reader “egghead” posted a new link to the same story. More importantly, he made an astute observation in regards to the video at the bottom of the just mentioned Aljazeera link. He watched it entirely, and found an example of hair growth from FOXO4-DRI in the second half of the video.

Unfortunately, I cannot embed the video here, but below is the most relevant screenshot:

FOXO4-DRI Hair Growth.
Using FOXO4-DRI for hair growth.


Apparently, many people have been taking commercially available versions of the FOXO4-DRI peptide. Both for longevity reasons and, in rare cases, for hair growth. The above screenshot is from someone named Darren Moore whose foxoddri website is no longer active. However, you can still read this article about his before and after hair growth.

Although Darren initially regrew his hair and it became darker, it seems like he lost most of the gains per this interesting 2019 video about him. During a brief perusal of Darren’s blog, I noticed that several commentators posted that they saw darker and fuller hair when taking FOXO4-DRI. There is also a 29-page group buy thread on this subject on the longecity forum.

I am surprised that people trust this untested and expensive chemical. Who knows if there are any long term side effects. In an interview on Linkedin, Dr. Keizer stated the following:

“We have now also received emails from people from America, for example, who have already bought the drug, the anti-aging substance FOXO4-DRI. You can now get it on the market in China. For a thousand euros you can buy ten milligrams and that is enough for a third of one treatment.”

I am not sure how the product that Dr. Keizer and his team developed (and patented) can be replicated by these Chinese labs. Even some US companies sell FOXO4-DRI for “scientific research use”. I assume all commercial versions of the drug have minor differences.

My Thoughts

I would not take this product in the hopes of re-growing my hair. Too little anecdotal evidence for that as of right now. Not to mention that the price for a full dose treatment is quite prohibitive. However, this whole FOXO4 subject matter is worth following in the coming years.

In an e-mail, Dr. Keizer told me that they were certainly not going to ignore hair growth results during their future research. However, cancer treatment and anti-aging remain their top priorities.

Perhaps localized senescent cell destruction in the scalp region will be possible via topical products in the future? Maybe this could then regrow hair via enabling nearby hair cells to function properly again?

Zombie Cell Killing Drugs and Hair Loss Reversal

Hair loss is caused by two main factors for the vast majority of men and women:

1) The ravaging effects of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) upon scalp hair in those who are genetically susceptible.

2) Aging.

Even in men that are genetically cursed with androgenetic alopecia, a majority seem to maintain decent hair into their 30s. i.e., they do not necessarily go fully bald in their late teens and early 20s, when testosterone and DHT production levels peak.

Moreover, many men with no male pattern hair loss can still end up rapidly going bald in their 60s and onwards due entirely to aging. Scalp skin and elasticity worsen with age, and an increasing number of hair cells tend to die as people get older (with some lucky rare exceptions). Therefore, a cure for aging could help a lot in delaying hair loss. Anti-aging research is a twin brother to hair loss research.

On a related note, the first thing you notice in young people with progeria is that they usually have no scalp hair left despite not even reaching puberty yet.

Senolytic Drugs to Slow Down Ageing Two Years Away?

I have covered senolytics and cellular senescence several times on this blog in the past. In brief, senescent cells (also known as “zombie” cells) are normal cells that have stopped dividing, but do not die and get cleared away as is typical. Instead, these zombie cells begin pumping out various damaging chemicals, which in turn harm healthy cells throughout the body. Senolytics in turn are anti-aging drugs that clear away these damaged zombie cells.

A large amount of research has been taking place in this field in recent years. Yesterday, the Mayo Clinic made a major announcement that a miracle senolytic drug could be on the market in as soon as two years. Worth a full read, and thanks to “Chris in CT” who first sent me the link for this story.

In mice, the senolytic drugs currently being tested have extended healthy lifespan by 36 per cent, the equivalent of adding around 30 years to human lifespans. More importantly, the treated mice have significantly more and better quality hair (fur).

The drugs used in this latest work in mice were a combination of dasatinib (used to treat leukemia) and quercetin (a flavonoid found in green tea, red wine and apples).

More research on this subject from Dr. James Kirkland’s team at the Mayo Clinic. According to Dr. Tamara Tchkonia, who works with Dr Kirkland: “As an optimistic person I can say we might have these drugs in maybe two years.”

Six human trials on senescent cell removal are already in progress, and an additional six will start shortly.

Recent interview with Dr. Judith Campisi where she discusses senolytic drugs and the removal of senescent cells from the human body: