I have discussed the Wnt/β-catenin pathway and Wnt signaling numerous times on this blog in the past. This avenue of research is one of the most exciting ones out there in the hair loss world. It does not involve any kind of complicated cell multiplication and implantation related procedure. If realized, the cure or treatment for hair loss that will arise from activating the Wnt signaling pathway (and subsequently maintaining the epithelial β-catenin signaling) will likely come from a topical product.
Of note, defects in the workings of the Wnt pathway are implicated in numerous diseases and medical conditions. Therefore, there are numerous scientists around the world who are studying this important subject matter for non-alopecia related reasons.
Wnt Signaling and Hair Loss: Updates
- By far the most well known company that is currently working on a topical hair loss drug to activate this pathway is Samumed. We are all eagerly awaiting their publication of final Phase II clinical trial results and subsequent commencement of Phase III trials. Several people recently noted that Samumed just completed Phase II trials, but I think that those were completed last year per this official government source. However, detailed published results are still not final. In any case, perhaps the pipeline page’s bar for the SM04554 hair loss product did move forward a bit recently per one commentator implication? I am on the company’s mailing list, but have received no recent email updates regarding the hair loss product. I am hoping it will happen any day now. Worth monitoring their Twitter account.
- In my last post, I mentioned that Dr. Antonella Tosti is presenting a paper titled “A new topical Wnt/beta-catenin activator in the treatment of men with male pattern hair loss”. I wondered what topical this would be, and commentator “Bob Ross’s Hair” hypothesized that is was methyl vanillate based on this study from 2016 in which Dr. Tosti is a co-author.
- Related to the above, Dr. John Cole’s staff recently wrote a blog post on their new WNT Act product for sale in the US. This product contains methyl vanillate. Dr. Cole has collaborated with Dr. Tosti (and various other Italian scientists) many times in the past and mentioned this in his interview on this blog. It seems like the Deltacrin WNT product sold in Italy is the exact same thing as the WNT Act product being sold in the US. On the US product’s Amazon page, they claim a 7% increase in hair density and a 10% increase in hair diameter.
- Commentator “Donitello” who often posts nonsense did surprise me and found a gem early last week that all my google alerts missed. A South Korean company named JW Pharmaceutical (in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania and Dr. George Cotsarelis) is developing a topical Wnt signal activating product to tackle hair loss. The product is currently known as CWL08006, and the company aims to start pre-clinical trials in 2019 and certain types of human testing in 2018. Apparently JW Pharma has been conducting research on the Wnt pathway since the early 2000s, and currently holds numerous patents and rights to proprietary compounds in this area.