Follicum is Back (via Coegin Pharma)

I covered Follicum (Sweden) and its FOL-005 hair growth peptide in eight posts between 2015 and 2021. The company’s unique osteopontin based approach to treating hair loss was very interesting.

The same approach could stimulate scalp hair growth and reduce excessive body hair growth (hirsutism). And the same technology could potentially treat diabetes and inflammation related problems.

Follicum’s regular press releases, CEO Jan Alenfall’s presentations, and the company’s rapid clinical trial progression impressed me. Their chief business officer Gunnar Gårdemyr was also in regular communication with me.

Follicum Past Clinical Trials

I covered both of Follicum’s past clinical trial results in 2017 and 2021, respectively.

  • In 2017, Follicum’s Phase 1 clinical trial results were released. They were deemed as positive (8 percent increase in hair growth), with an effect comparable to that of Minoxidil. Moreover, safety was not an issue, with no major side effects in trial participants.
  • In 2021, Follicum’s Phase 2 clinical trials of FOL-005 came out. The topical compound resulted in a 6.6 hair/cm2 increase in hair growth, but this was deemed to be insignificant compared to placebo.

Thereafter, the company ceased further development of FOL-005, and it all seemed over for yet another false flag operation. Or perhaps not?

Merger and Acqusition by Coegin Pharma

In September 2021, Coegin Pharma merged with Follicum. This merger was confirmed as an acquisition in 2022.

In the first of the two links above, Coegin’s CEO Tore Duvold said something of interest in the interview:

Question: “With regard to the hair loss project, which has recently been put on hold, how will it be handled once the companies merge”?

Answer: “Follicum announced that they have paused the hair loss project. In Coegin, we have strong capabilities in dermatology, and we will review and analyse the results before we make any conclusions”.

Follicum FOL-005 from Coegin Pharma.
Follicum FOL-005 clinical trial progression status. Source: Coegin Pharma.

Follicum Back in the News

  • In March, a Tweet from Coegin indicated that they were meeting with potential partners for Follicum’s FOL-005.
  • Follicum was mentioned in February in an updated article titled: “Could We See a New Dawn for Hair Loss Treatments?”. It summarizes the problems that the company faced in trying to bring FOL-005 to market after the unimpressive Phase 2 trial results.
  • When going through Coegin Pharma’s website, I found a highly detailed comprehensive corportate presentation on Follicum and FOL-005. It was presented at the end of 2022 by Coegin’s COO Kristian Lykke Fick.

Their take on the past trials is more positive. Key quote:

“FOL005 1.5% dose was on par with treatment effect reported for minoxidil and finasteride with a growth of 12 hairs/cm2 after 4 months of treatment. However, with more than 60% of subjects responding to treatment compared to competitors where 40% responders effect is previously documented after 4 months.”

Note that while Follicum’s old Swedish website is still active, the main English site is now revamped. It has an expanded research section where it covers FOL-005 in great detail. In 2022, they also filed for a patent related to wound healing. I am surprised they do not mention anything in relation to their osteopontin-derived peptide’s body hair growth inhibition.

Follicum plans to conduct various new scalp hair growth related clinical trials from 2023-2027. On their website’s plans section, they state the following:

“We believe there is a high likelihood of success based on the previous clinical data.”

Too bad about the new time frame and the wait for venture partners for funding. Otherwise, I am not entirely pessimistic about this product. I do feel that it can compete with Finasteride and Minoxidil in terms of effectiveness, but via a totally different mechanism of action. And with few if any serious side effects.

15 thoughts on “Follicum is Back (via Coegin Pharma)”

  1. I’m really tired of this kind of news. experiment experiment experiment. they are really making fun of us. Do we look that stupid? I ask those who hear my voice; Please let’s protest these fake news, experiments, companies. That ‘s enough.

    1. I like your idea. How do you think we should go about this protesting? I think our angry comments are making a statement. It would really be great if these companies actually read our comments. So many companies working on hair loss and it seems only the products that don’t work get to market but anything that could actually work to some degree is delayed to infinity. It’s quite a disappointment.

  2. Nobody is impressed with something comparable to Fin/Minoxidil. At this point, they’re just wasting investor dollars.

  3. If Histogen also comes back, I will be scared to write a post in case all regular readers leave for good:-)

    1. I’d be first in line if this, Histogen, Follica or any other abandoned/laggard actually came to market. As far as the timeline for FOL-005 I’m not shocked, it’s basically the perpetual hamster wheel of 5 years running!

  4. Really hoping CosmeRNA works well and comes out soon to purchase. I want to add it to my regimen.

  5. These companies are a pathetic joke. No one with hair loss needs another Finasteride or Minoxidil. It’s getting so old. Pyrilutimide is another one that is just a lot of hype. I’m using it in my recessed temples and seeing nothing in terms of regrowth. $110 down the toilet. I’m tired of these companies and their garbage products which all don’t work! What we need is hair follicle neogenesis related companies. Once the hairs are dying off, saving them is difficult if not impossible most of the time.

    I’m waiting for these folks at Stanford University to begin human trials with Verteporfin and FAK inhibitor VS-6062. They seem to show actual results and I have some confidence they may even work with microwounding as opposed to deep wounding. However it’s been 2 years and they’re doing nothing regarding human trials to this point. Give the Longaker Lab there a call and tell them to get off their behinds and start clinical testing already!!

    The whole industry is all about money, selling products to desperate people that don’t work, gatekeepers and institutions wanting their exorbitant pay for anything to be allowed to happen at all. It’s all a money grab! Pathetic. We’d have a cure by now if the industry wasn’t so lukewarm, unmotivated and corrupt. Stemson is a perfect example of this. They report nothing, hire people who accomplish who knows what and feel is not really worth us knowing. Dr. Tsuji has a hair multiplication cure that will be available when after the end of the world occurs the way things look. He says we’ll have a cure in 2026, more likely 2062. Clinical testing yet? Nope! G-d help us! With these pieces of work running things we’ll be bald to our graves.

  6. @J.M.M. Please don’t knock Dr. Tsuji. He’s been wasting our time for years now and I need something to keep laughing at.

    1. I heard from Andrew Schutte of Replicel they’re beginning their treatment for hair loss in the Caribbean now. Wonder how that’s working out. I see their stock is moving up slowly. A good sign maybe? Need to look into what’s going on. I think it’s good for androgenic alopecia only though.

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