Category Archives: World Congress for Hair Research 2015

Updates from the 2015 WCHR and Related News

The 9th World Congress for Hair Research just ended in Miami and there is a surprising lack of online publicly available information regarding key developments. Some companies often publish their presentations on their websites several days after the end of such conferences, so I will update this post in the next week as new information comes out.

Update: 9th World Conference for Hair Research abstracts now available online.

Update: Below is the unbelievable before and after image from Histogen’s Dr. Gail Naughton’s presentation that everyone is talking about (Edit: Image was later removed from source site).

Update: Samumed’s poster and Samumed’s slides.

Update: Hellouser’s Youtube channel.

Update: Hellouser’s interview with Histogen’s Dr. Gail Naughton.

Update: Spencer Kobren’s interview with Histogen’s Dr. Gail Naughton, including all her slides.  Very encouraging and an absolute must see!

Update: Hellouser’s interview with Replicel’s Dr Rolf Hoffman and Lee Buckler.

—  Update: Spencer Kobren’s interview with Replicel’s Lee Buckler.

— The best place to get updates remains Hellouser’s thread on the HLT forums.  He is apparently back in Canada and fatigued at present, but will slowly update that thread (or perhaps create new threads on different companies in that portion of the HLT forums).  He is going to load his audio files somewhere outside the forums too.

Samumed came out yet another press release today, summarizing its presentation at the Miami Congress.  I am getting more optimistic about the company’s unique SM04554 topical product that tackles hair loss via the Wnt pathway.  At present, the company has only concluded that the product is very safe based on its recently completed 300 person trial (interestingly, one of the co-organizers of the 2015 WCHR, Dr. WIlma Bergfeld, was involved in this trial via the Cleveland center).  Actual data on new hair growth will come out as it becomes available, which I am hoping will be in early 2016.  The conclusion of the press release is encouraging, even if not pertaining to humans: “SM04554 has been shown to generate new hair follicles and increase hair count in multiple animal models.”  At the same time, we have to be wary from past experiences that all these press releases could very well be just a means to attract publicity and funding.  The final product could at best always end up being no better than Rogaine.

— I am disappointed that the 2015 WCHR Twitter account has been completely silent during and after the Congress.   It is unlikely that they will publish anything this week either, but maybe it is still worth keeping an eye on that account before it ends in Twitter purgatory. Maybe “Helllouser” should get the account now while no-one has it and then tell the Japanese organizers of next year’s Congress that he will do a much better job of updating it?

— I discussed Allergan twice in this blog recently (see here and here) and it seems like the company is now definitely merging with Pfizer. Together, the new entity will be by far the world’s largest pharmaceutical company.  Too early to tell how if at all this will impact the release of Allergan’s Bimatoprost and Setipiprant drugs to treat hair loss.

— Replicel usually publishes its latest presentation on its website and announces them via its Twitter account.

— Histogen remains the big mystery.  A few months ago, most people had given up on it. Then things changed and I wrote this post. Now “Hellouser” is saying that he was very impressed with their presentation.  I am really looking forward to his interview with CEO Gail Naughton.

9th World Congress for Hair Research

Last year, I wrote a post about the 9th Congress for Hair Research that will take place in Miami, Florida this year from November 18-21. At the time, the website for this congress was already up, albeit a bit barren.

The most interesting thing that I saw and mentioned in last year’s blog post was the fact that the three people in charge of this conference were all women despite the fact that men suffer from hair loss far more frequently than women. Especially when it comes to major (high norwood scale) hair loss. In any event, it is no longer surprising for me to read about female hair loss research and I am grateful for each new scientist.

9th World Congress for Hair Research: “Reflect, Rejuvenate and Regenerate”

I am certain that this will be the most heavily attended Congress for Hair Research to date, just like the recent 23rd ISHRS Meeting was the most heavily attended one to date. Worldwide hair transplant procedure totals have also been breaking new records every year recently as middle class populations with expendable incomes increase (and as hair loss rates in general also increase in my as yet unproven opinion).

Among the interesting things that I have seen on the current version of the Congress website include:

  • The Final Program Book. A must skim through.
  • The theme/slogan of “Reflect, Rejuvenate, and REGENERATE.” It is encouraging that they have capitalized the word “REGENERATE” and this hopefully portends favorably to the focus of the conference.
  • While the topmost Platinum level sponsor (Women’s Rogaine) is a huge disappointment since they are not selling any new hair loss technology or product, it is encouraging that Samumed is a Silver level sponsor and Kythera Biopharmaceuticals is a Bronze level sponsor. Proctor & Gamble is a Gold level sponsor and their bio seems to imply that they are there to primarily promote their shampoos (which are not even among the best hair loss shampoos in the world).
  • Also encouraging that Shiseido and Kerastem are contributing sponsors.
  • The number of hair loss researchers presenting at this Congress seems to be a record high, although this remains to be verified.
  • A majority of the big name companies and researchers (Christiano, Cotsarelis, Garza, Jahoda, Tsuji and many more) are presenting at this Congress.
  • The next 10th Congress for Hair Research will be in Japan, the current global epicenter of hair loss research and clinical trials due to that country’s favorable new laws.

There are way too many interesting presentations to list here separately. Topics ranging from PGD2 inhibition to Wnt/β-catenin signaling to progenitor cells to wounding are all covered. Cell based regenerative therapies are not surprisingly well covered. There are a few presentations on JAK inhibitors and alopecia areata from new research centers. I am also interested in the update on topical Finasteride product P-3074 as I would love to stop taking oral Finasteride next year. An update on Samumed’s topical drug SM04554 is also something to look forward to.

Which presentations are you looking forward to the most?