A potential new cure for baldness has been discovered using a drug originally intended for the treatment of osteoporosis.
Improved hair growth is a side effect of another drug, cyclosporin A, which is used to treat autoimmune diseases.
And researchers found that it also inhibits a protein, SFRP1
The new cure uses another drug, Way-316606, which was developed to inhibit SFRP1 as a treatment for osteoporosis.
The project leader, Dr. med. Nathan Hawkshaw said he could really "change people who suffer from hair loss."
Only two drugs are currently available to treat baldness (androgenetic alopecia):
- Minoxidil, for Men and Women Women
- Finasteride, for Men Only
Both are not available on the NHS and both have Side effects and are not always very effective, so patients often resort to a hair transplant.
The research was published in PLOS Biology, was conducted in a laboratory, with samples containing hair follicles of the scalp of more than 40 male hair transplant patients.
And dr. Hawkshaw told the BBC that a clinical trial would be needed to see if treatment in humans was effective and safe.
What causes hair loss?
Hair loss is a daily occurrence and generally nothing to worry about. Some species are temporary and some are permanent.
You should consult a doctor for:
- sudden hair loss
- developing bald spots
- hair loss in lumps
- head itching and burning
- worry about hair loss
Source: NHS Choices
A British dermatologist association spokesman told the BBC, "This is a very interesting study."
"As the researchers say, hair loss is a common disorder and can cause significant harm to emotional health, including loss of self-esteem and self-confidence ,
"More research needs to be done before it can be used by people with hair loss.
" For people with hair loss, treatments can be hit hard. There is none that is generally effective.
"Because of this, new treatments are exciting because they provide people with more treatment options that may be effective."