Team discovers signaling molecule that potently stimulates hair growth

Currently, there are two medications on the market—finasteride and minoxidil—that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration for androgenetic alopecia. Finasteride is only approved for use in men. Both drugs are not universally effective and need to be taken daily to maintain their clinical effect.

“There is a strong need for new, effective hair loss medicines, and naturally occurring compounds that are normally used by the dermal papilla cells present ideal next-generation candidates for treatment,” Plikus said. “Our test in the human hair transplant model validates the preclinical potential of SCUBE3.”

I’m try to contact the researchers involved in this and the authors of articles about the findings. They should also mention that Finasteride can ruin people’s lives.

1 Like

Oh yeah that’s the real problem. So they’re working on another hairloss treatment not to overcome the danger but to make it more potent and convenient. Fantastic.

What do you think the implications of this will be for us?

To be fair, this isn’t Merck or another a drug company that’s working on a new hair loss treatment. It’s academic researchers. Hopefully, since it works through a different mechanism, it doesn’t interfere with neurosteroids. I know that people on this forum would not have tried a treatment for hair loss if they knew the risks, but hopefully one day scientists can figure the biological mechanism for hair loss and focus their treatments on something that doesn’t alter the patient’s manhood.

1 Like

No one knows for sure, but probably nothing in terms of understanding the science of PFS. But if this drug is approved and doesn’t have sexual side effects, maybe an organized lobby could convince the medical establishment to stop prescribing Finasteride for hair loss.

Wouldn’t that be bad news for us? Obviously I don’t want people to take finasteride but I’m just a bit worried about us being left to rot if some revolutionary new advancement makes finasteride redundant. It would be better if finasteride was actually recalled on the basis of the danger it poses.

Since they didn’t even touch on the danger posed by current options it’s safe to assume they’re not considering it in their research.

If they thought 5ARI was a perfect treatment with no issues they surely wouldn’t work on an alternative.

Yeah, I thought about that one too. It’s a tough ethical dilemma. Maybe if this does become an approved pharmaceutical, PFS patients can team up with whatever company backs it, to lobby Congress to ban Finasteride and force insurance companies to pay for a hair loss treatment that doesn’t interfere with patients’ manhood’s. Without some sort of campaign like this, insurance companies will probably push doctors to prescribe generic Finasteride before trying new patented treatments. What we really need is an advocate who can get the press and/or Congress to pay attention to what is going on. A pharmaceutical company might not be the right advocate though, since they might not want to upset Merck.

1 Like

Yeah but look at the reasons they gave. I’d take more comfort if they actually mentioned the issues.

I’d like to think one way or the other we will have made significant progress as a community by the time this ever gets approved so it won’t matter either way.