Friday September 21, 2018

A Drug That Can Potentially Cure Hair Loss

The only other option available to patients in such a situation is hair transplantation surgery.

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The drug works by targeting a protein that inhibits the development and growth of many tissues, including hair follicles, said the study published in the journal PLOS Biology.
Hair Transplant Representational Image, Pixabay
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There is new hope for bald people to get back hair without going for transplantation as researchers have found that a drug originally developed to treat the bone disease, osteoporosis, stimulates hair growth.

The drug works by targeting a protein that inhibits the development and growth of many tissues, including hair follicles, said the study published in the journal PLOS Biology.

“The fact this new agent, which had never even been considered in a hair loss context, promotes human hair growth is exciting because of its translational potential: it could one day make a real difference to people who suffer from hair loss,” said project leader Nathan Hawkshaw from The University of Manchester in Britain.

The researchers found that the compound WAY-316606, which was originally developed to treat osteoporosis, has a dramatic stimulatory effect on human hair follicles.

The researchers said that the few drugs which are currently available for treatment of male-pattern balding have moderate side effects and often produce disappointing hair regrowth results.

The only other option available to patients in such a situation is hair transplantation surgery.

The researchers, therefore, sought to develop new ways to promote human hair growth.

The approach was to first identify the molecular mechanisms of an old immunosuppressive drug, Cyclosporine A (CsA).

There is new hope for bald people to get back hair without going for transplantation as researchers have found that a drug originally developed to treat the bone disease, osteoporosis, stimulates hair growth.
Drug to treat hairloss, Pixabay

Cyclosporine A has been commonly used since the 1980s as a crucial drug that suppresses transplant rejection and autoimmune diseases.

However, it often has severe side-effects, the least serious — but most interesting — of which is that it enhances cosmetically unwanted hair growth.

The team carried out a full gene expression analysis of isolated human scalp hair follicles treated with CsA.

This revealed that CsA reduces the expression of SFRP1, a protein that inhibits the development and growth of many tissues, including hair follicles.

The inhibitory mechanism is completely unrelated to CsA’s immunosuppressive activities, making SFRP1 a new and highly promising therapeutic target for anti-hair loss strategies.

The researchers then found that the compound WAY-316606, which was originally developed to treat osteoporosis, targets the same mechanism as CsA by specifically antagonising SFRP1.

When they treated hair follicles with WAY-316606, the unrelated agent also effectively enhanced human hair growth like CsA.

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This led the researchers to conclude that external application of the osteoporosis compound or similar compounds to balding human scalp may promote hair growth to the same magnitude as CsA or even better, but without its side effects.

“We were able to conduct our experiments with scalp hair follicles that had generously been donated by over 40 patients and were then tested in organ cultures,” Hawkshaw said.

“This makes our research clinically very relevant, as many hair research studies only use cell culture,” he said, adding that a clinical trial is required next to tell us whether this drug or similar compounds are both effective and safe in hair loss patients. (IANS)

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Anaemia Drug Can Aid in Recovery After Heart Attack

However, further studies will be needed to confirm if the same benefits are seen in humans, they noted

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Heart Disease
Concern has often focused on the toxicity or carcinogenic properties of the metals, particularly at high doses. Pixabay

Drugs currently undergoing development to treat anaemia — lack of blood — could be repurposed to help prevent people with Type-2 diabetes from developing heart failure, according to a new research.

Researchers found that after a heart attack, a protein called HIF acts to help heart cells survive.

In people with diabetes, fats accumulate within the heart muscle and stop the HIF protein from becoming active. This means that a person is more likely to suffer lasting heart muscle damage, and develop heart failure after a heart attack.

“After a heart attack, people with Type-2 diabetes are more likely to develop heart failure more quickly, but we have not fully understood the reasons why that is the case,” said lead researcher Lisa Heather, research student at the University of Oxford in the UK.

“What we have shown with this research is that the metabolism of people with Type-2 diabetes means they have higher levels of fatty acids in the heart. This prevents signals going to the heart protective protein telling it to ‘kick-in’ after a heart attack,” she added.

Representational image.
Representational image. (IANS)

In the study, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, the team treated diabetic rats with a drug known to activate the HIF protein, and were able to encourage the heart to recover after a heart attack.

However, these initial results suggest that several drugs known to activate HIF and currently undergoing phase-III clinical trials to treat people with anaemia, could potentially be given to people with diabetes, immediately after a heart attack in the future, the researchers said.

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“This research in rats has not only identified the mechanism that could explain why people with Type-2 diabetes have poorer outcomes after a heart attack, but also a practical way this might be prevented,” the researchers explained.

However, further studies will be needed to confirm if the same benefits are seen in humans, they noted. (IANS)