Category Archives: Topical Finasteride

Encouraging Update on Polichem’s P-3074

In my popular post from last year regarding topical finasteride, I discussed Polichem’s P-3074 product. P-3074 is “vehicled” in Hydroxypropyl-Chitosan (HPCH) per the latest announcements. Past references state that it uses hydroxypropyl-chitosan (HPCH) as the “film-forming agent”.

Polichem: P-3074 Topical Finasteride Update

At this year’s just completed World Congress for Hair Research in Miami, one of the presentations pertained to this very product. The key quote from the abstract book:

“A pharmacokinetic phase I study, tested P-3074 b.i.d. [=twice per day] vs oral finasteride 1 mg o.d. [=once per day], revealing a finasteride systemic exposure 15 times lower in the topical formulation. A pharmacodynamic study compared P-3074 b.i.d. and o.d. vs oral finasteride 1 mg o.d. in DHT inhibition in scalp (vertex) and in serum. The results showed comparable serum/scalp DHT inhibitions across formulations, suggesting that the achievement of comparable levels of DHT inhibition vs the oral form could be attained by a lower dose of P-3074.”

My note: Their older report from the 7th World Congress for Hair Research from two years ago stated that the P-3074 product is composed of 0.25% finasteride. So the twice per day dose equals 0.50% per day. This is apparently lower than 1 mg/day oral finasteride per the implication of the last sentence in the above paragraph.

My note: They also state in the most recent abstract that at lower doses of 200 mcL, scalp DHT reduction remains unchanged. However, serum DHT reduction was much lower, potentially even further limiting systemic absorption. So 200mcL< 0.50% < 1mg. Currently, P-3074 is in Phase III clinical trials in Europe.

I called my local compounding pharmacy a few months ago to inquire about them making topical finasteride for me. They told me that while they do make topical finasteride in gel form, they only get several such requests each year. Moreover, at around $100 per month, it is much more expensive than the cost of generic oral finasteride.

What I am really looking forward to is a topical dutasteride product with very low systemic absorption. The results from oral dutasteride are clearly superior to those from oral finasteride. Make sure to read the comments to my dutasteride (Avodart) for hair loss user experiences post.

Unfortunately, oral dutasteride also results in significantly higher rates of side effects. We really need a topical version of dutasteride asap. Perhaps this will only happen after dutasteride is officially approved to treat hair loss.


Dr. Antonella Tosti is listed as a consultant to both Polichem and Kythera in the abstract I mentioned earlier.

Dr. Hasson Updates us on Topical Finasteride

In June 2014, I wrote a popular post on topical finasteride that I  have since updated a few times. Shortly thereafter, someone from the Hasson & Wong clinic in Vancouver, Canada e-mailed me. They wanted to let me know that they now prescribe topical finasteride for hair loss.

Fast forward to several days ago, and Dr. Victor Hasson posted a detailed comment in that original blog post. I thought that his comment deserved its own post. Here is Dr. Hasson’s update:

Our topical finasteride solution that we have been using for the past 2 years has proven to be very effective. It has been used primarily in patients who had been experiencing side effects on the oral drug. These patients have been free of side effects on the topical formulation.

This is a good sign that the drug is unlikely to be going systemic via cutaneous permeation. We are currently performing tests using Franz diffusion cells with the The University of Milan to get more data.

Once we have secured a reliable source for dutasteride we will start testing topical formulations with this drug as it will likely be more effective.

A new liposomal formulation of topical finasteride is currently available to our European patients. It has been developed in collaboration with Farmacia Parati in Italy. This preparation can be obtained from this company. You will require a physicians prescription for this, as the formulation needs to be compounded on a case by case basis. This is in order to comply with European and FDA regulations.

Victor Hasson MD

I am impressed by the efforts that the Hassson & Wong clinic is putting into creating their own topical finasteride and topical dutasteride products. A 2007 study on liposomal delivery of finasteride suggests that this route  will be effective.

If the results from these topical products consistently prove to be as good or superior to oral finasteride, this development will be a game changer. Especially if there are fewer side effects.