What's new in male balding research?



According to a news release, Kythera Holdings has acquired licensing rights to setipiprant - potential drug for hair loss. Setipiprant is a selective oral antagonist to the prostaglandin D(PGD2) receptor.  


Why is blocking the PGD2 pathway important?

About three years ago, I shared a blog 

Breakthrough in Baldness? Blocking the Prostaglandin D2 Pathway May be the Answer 

In that blog, I described research showing that PGD2 levels were higher in bald areas of the scalp than non bald areas. Theoretically, blocking this pathway could have important roles for baldness. 

And so here we are three years later. Kythera Holdings, a subsidiary of Kythera Pharmaceuticals, announced that it has acquired  licensing rights to setipiprant, in the agreement with Actelion. Apparently, human studies are next for the company. What is so interesting about this drug is that it's already been studied for other uses. Setipiprant has previously been studied as a type of alley treatment, including a phase 3 study in patients with seasonal allergic rhinitis and a phase 2 study in patients with asthma. There were no serious side effects in these studies and treatment was well tolerated. According to the news release, Actelion suspended the development of setipiprant due to lack of efficacy seen in the allergy and asthma studies. So we haven't heard more about the drug. 


Dr. Jeff Donovan is a Canadian and US board certified dermatologist specializing exclusively in hair loss. To schedule a consultation, please call the Whistler office at 604.283.1887

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