The Oral JAK Inhibitor Race

The JAK Inhibitors in Alopecia Areata: A Look at Pfizer and Concert Pharmaceuticals

The last 5 years have witnessed some exiting progress in the field of alopecia areata research. Although not yet FDA approved, we now have several JAK inhibitors that are used “off label” in treating this disease - tofacitinib, ruxolitinib and baricitinib. These continue to be studied and they have become an important part of my practice is resistant forms of alopecia areata.


How long do we use tofacitinib for? Can we taper?

Tofacitinib for Alopecia Areata: How soon does regrowth occur?

New Clinical Trials For JAK Inhibitors Underway

A number of clinical trials have been completed and additional ones are in progress.

Furthermore, we are now seeing several clinical trials underway with new drugs. Companies like Pfizer, Aclaris and Concert Pharmaeuticals are studying various new JAK inhibitors.

Pfizer: PF-06651600 And PF-06700841

Pfizer has taken interest in understanding the potential benefits of its JAK inhibitors. Centers in the US, Canada, and Australia are involved in studies of Pfizer created JAK inhibitors:

Pfizer Trials: PF 06651600

Concert Pharmaceuticals: CTP-543

Concert Pharmaceuticals has recently expanded it’s clinical trials. The company studies a specific form of ruxolitinib known as “deuterated ruxolitinib.” The JAK inhibitor is also known as CTP-543. Clincial trials are now underway comparing the tolerability of once-daily versus twice-daily dosing of CTP-543, in adult patients with chronic, moderate to severe alopecia areata.

Concert Pharmaeutics: trials with CTP-543


It’s an exciting time in the clinical and research world of alopecia areata. The JAK inhibitors have brought to the clinic what we have long hoped for - treatments that specifically target pathways that are abnormal in alopecia areata. The ongoing studies of topical JAK inhibitors have been somewhat disappointing to date - but the studies of the oral JAK inhibitors continue to show promise. Of course, additional studies in both area are important as this field moves foward.

Patients interested in understanding what clinical trials may be available in their area should visit the clinical trials website of the US National Library of Medicine:

Is there a clinical trial in my geographical area?

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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