The 76th Annual Meeting of the Society for Investigative Dermatology starts today in Portland, Oregon in the US and lasts for four days. The schedule can be found in this detailed 100 page document.
A number of renowned hair loss researchers are presenting their work or leading discussions here, including Dr. Rox Anderson, Dr. Angela Christiano, Dr. George Cotsarelis, Dr. Mayumi Ito, Dr. Anthony Oro, Dr. Maxim Plikus and others.
Some of the papers/abstracts that will be discussed are very interesting, including one based on this wounding related study co-authored by Dr. Luis Garza. Also interesting for our purposes is one in which Samumed’s Dr. Yusuf Yazici is a co-author. The title of this one is: “A small molecule modulator of the wnt pathway (SM04554) as a potential topical treatment for androgenetic alopecia (AGA)“.
Alcaris Therapeutics and their CEO Neal Walker are also present in a big way, both as sponsors and via leading a symposium on JAK inhibitors with many expert speakers. Hopefully someone asks them about their male pattern hair loss trials too since the symposium focuses on alopecia areate, scarring alopecia, pruritus and vitiligo. Dr. Christiano and Dr. Etienne Wang are also presenting a paper titled “Conditional ablation of JAK-STAT5 signaling induces anagen hair growth“.
On this blog, I have in the past discussed various dermatological associations and non-profits, including several important ones in the United States such as the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) and Advancing Innovation in Dermatology (AID). A third one called the Society for Investigative Dermatology (SID) recently had its 75th annual meeting on May 11th, 2016.
On SID’s youtube channel, you can find a number of the video presentations from this meeting, including a few that discuss hair in at least part of the presentation. On SID’s website they have a summary list of presentations that includes quite a few involving hair, but none of those videos seem to be available as yet. Hopefully they will make more of them publicly available soon assuming they videotaped all the presentations.
Dr. Michael Rendl
For now, the most relevant video when it comes to our cause is a presentation by Dr. Michael Rendl that I have embedded below. On this blog, I have discussed Dr. Rendl’s work several times in the past, including in this post about his Rendl lab. The below video is highly interesting, especially when it comes to the crucial dermal papilla cell and its induction of hair growth. I did not realize how complicated this process is and how researchers still have so many uncertainties about the various signals, transcription factors, pathways and processes that lead to the dermal papilla inducing hair growth.
The parts on gene expression, RNA deep-sequencing and CRISPR-mediated genome editing are also very interesting, especially since CRISPR has been in the news so much in the past year (and it now seems inevitable that adult humans will be able to have their genes edited in the future). A lot of the content is very technical and way above my head.
Kudos to Dr. Rendl for creating the hair-GEL (gene expression library) website for sharing this crucial information with everyone for free. It is too bad that Dr. Rendl is totally bald and seems to be very comfortable with that look.