HairClone has been featured in an article by the Guardian published online, 1st October 2023. Titled ‘‘We’re not making new hairs, we’re rescuing’: could scientists reverse male pattern baldness?’, the article discusses HairClone’s experimental cell therapy approach for reversing baldness, hair follicle banking service and features statements from HairClone founder and Chief Executive Officer, Dr Paul Kemp.
As highlighted in the article, dermal papilla cells are specialised cells within the hair follicle responsible for determining the thickness of the hair shaft. In androgenic alopecia (aka patterned balding), these cells at the base of the follicle are lost, leading to follicle miniaturisation and thinning hairs. HairClone is aiming to reverse this process and the appearance of hair loss by using a patient’s own dermal papilla cells in an injectable cell therapy.
Step one of this process is to remove appropriate donor follicles. HairClone offers a hair follicle banking service whereby around 100 follicles can be taken from miniaturising-resistant areas of the head and cryopreserved. HairClone is able to multiply these cells over 1000 times from thawed follicles and are close to showing clinically the effect of dermal papilla cell injections for reversing miniaturisation.
The principle of HairClone’s treatment is to rejuvenate existing follicles undergoing miniaturisation but have not yet fully miniaturised. Banking follicles early, whilst the follicles are still healthy ‘stops the clock’ on ageing and preserves the highest quality cells.
The article also mentions that in the future, it may be possible to predict a patient’s hairline by analysing genetic markers within follicles, as the embryonic origin of dermal papilla cells is different between areas of the scalp. HairClone is working on a diagnostic tool that could ‘map the head’ and determine the eventual boundary of hair loss or assess the effects of treatments on follicle characteristics. Exciting preliminary research by HairClone suggests that analysing cells on plucked hairs could reveal whether a follicle is actively miniaturising, destined to miniaturise or is resistant to miniaturisation.
The Guardian was founded in Manchester, UK in 1821 as a daily British newspaper. Now owned by Guardian Media group, it has evolved into an international news and media organisation delivering investigative journalism to global readers in both printed and online forms. HairClone, also founded in Manchester UK, was formed in 2015 by a group of like-minded and experienced individuals with a shared mission to make hair loss history.