category archives: sanford-burnham medical research institute

stemson therapeutics: hair follicles from stem cells

i cover stemson therapeutics (or its founder dr. alexey terskikh, or its ceo geoff hamilton) at least several times a year. this company represents the leading hope for a hair multiplication related 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 cure. among the highlights:

i now usually keep updating this post rather than write a new one each time. google penalizes too many short posts on the same subject.

stemson therapeutics: 2022 updates

update: february 12, 2022 — joe tillman and spencer kobren have released three mini-interview videos of stemson ceo geoff hamilton. parts 2 and 3 are the most important:

update: february 1, 2022 — stemson just hired dr. kapil bharti and dr. george murphy to its scientific advisory board. both seem to be renowned scientists in the world of regenerative medicine and stem cell research.

update: january 18, 2022 — mr. hamilton is covered in a new mit technology article titled: “going bald? lab-grown hair cells could be on the way.

alexey terskikh and geoff hamilton

update: december 2021 — stemson founder alexey terskikh just co-authored an interesting new paper titled “the rise of induced pluripotent stem cell approach to hair restoration.”

“combined with robotics and automation of the transplantation process, this novel regenerative medicine approach is well poised to make hair restoration a routine procedure affordable for everybody who can benefit from it. at present, it seems that the generation of dp cells through the neural crest intermediate has the lowest barrier to enter the clinical trials in the next few years.”

note that dr. hamilton also gave the keynote address at the recent global 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 summit.

update: october 12, 2021 — presentation at the alliance for regenerative medicine’s “meeting on the mesa”:

update: september 1, 2021 — market knowledge podcast interview with geoff hamilton. make sure to watch the video in there.

update: july 15, 2021 — stemson covered on the news by local san diego abc news affiliate:

update: october 2020 — the ishrs interviewed dr. alexey terskikh on video.

update: september 2020 — stemson just got another $7.5 million in funding from allergan and fortunis capital. h/t reader “james”. quote from the ceo of fortunis:

“stemson’s novel cell therapy approach to treat 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 has game-changing potential.”

ceo geoff hamilton said the following:

“stemson has established the biological and technical building blocks which are needed to solve the problem of 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 . a truly curative solution is now feasible.”

we have heard similar praise from a number of other company ceos during the past decade. so no use in getting hopes raised this early in the process.

note that allergan is involved in the 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 world via investments in a significant number of upcoming companies and technologies.

stemson therapeutics hair multiplication
stemson therapeutics hair multiplication via dermal papilla cells. source: company presentation, 2021.

september 14, 2020

stemson therapeutics patent approved

earlier today, stemson therapeutics announced that its cornerstone patent had received approval in the us.

this patent (no. 10716808) is titled “methods and compositions to modulate 2022世界杯决赛日期 ”. the technology is licensed exclusively from the sanford burnham prebys medical discovery institute.

the process outlined in this patent entails a novel process to differentiate induced pluripotent stem cells (ipsc) into dermal papilla cells (dpcs). the latter cells control hair follicle generation and hair cycling.

considering that stemson is yet to even start human clinical trials, i do not expect this product to come to market any time soon. however, the scientific research behind this company’s technology seems to be solid, and the company itself is well funded (see further below).

on the company’s news page, last week they announced the hiring of dr. meghan samberg as vice president of r&d and preclinical development.

june 27, 2019

stemson therapeuticsduring the last 30 days, we have received positive updates from: aclaris therapeutics; dr. lowry (new company pelage pharmaceuticals); follica; polichem; and shiseido.

we also had a positive story from columbia university (dr. angela christiano) this week that i did not cover. it pertain to past research on jak-stat signaling and hair regrowth. i did not think that we could have a more inspiring month than we have just had in the world of 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 cure research.

stemson therapeutics has arrived

perhaps the biggest story of the year is the fact that stemson therapeutics is now a reality, and they have officially launched their website. i originally covered this company in 2018, and discussed its research all the way back in 2015.

moreover, stemson has secured a multi-million dollar investment from pharmaceutical giant allergan. in dr. alexey terskikh’s interview with me in 2017, he mentioned that the biggest thing holding them back was lack of sufficient funding.

i have asked dr. terskikh to give us another interview soon and hopefully he will accept. earlier this month, he told me that his lab was given a podium presentation at the isscr conference on june 27th. however, he did not mention the below surprising development.

functional hair follicles grown from stem cells

functional hair follicles grown from stem cells.
functional hair follicles grown from stem cells. source: sanford burnham and alexey terskikh.

earlier today, san diego based sanford burnham prebys published a what seems to be groundbreaking new article: functional hair follicle grown from stem cells. note that this research institute is affiliated with dr. terskikh. more on their twitter account.

the breakthrough is because scientists from sanford burnham have created natural-looking hair that grows through the skin using human induced pluripotent stem cells (ipscs). according to the article, this “could revolutionize the 2022世界杯决赛日期 industry”.

unlike in past experiments where new 2022世界杯决赛日期 was underneath the skin, haphazard, and disorderly, the current results produced hair growing above the skin in a uniform pattern. the breakthrough was achieved by using a biodegradable 3d scaffold that guided 2022世界杯决赛日期 through the skin in its preferred direction.

actual paper is here. lead researcher is a dr. antonella pinto.

the current protocol is based on mouse epithelial cells combined with human dermal papilla cells. however, the derivation of the epithelial part of a hair follicle from human ipscs is currently underway in the terskikh lab. key quote from the article from today:

“combined human ipsc-derived epithelial and dermal papilla cells will enable the generation of entirely human hair follicles, ready for allogenic transplantation in humans.”

make sure to read about the difference between autologous and allogenic. stemson therapeutics has licensed the above technology from sanford burnham.

pluripotent stem cells used to grow human hair in mice

scientists led by dr. alexey terskikh  at the california-based sanford-burnham medical research institute published a groundbreaking study yesterday that was widely covered by the media.  some interesting takes here, here and here. the first of those three links has some interesting feedback from histogen’s ceo dr. gail naughton.

in summary, these scientists used pluripotent stem cells from humans to create dermal papilla type cells that were then injected into hairless mice.  lo and behold, the mice started to grow human hair!  i do not see any strong reason preventing the same from working from human->human (as long as its the same human). however, dr. terskikh stated that he is still looking for partners “to implement this final step”, and clinical trials will then tack on a few more years to this procedure finally coming to market.

one thing that i like about the sanford-burnham medical research institute is that it is a non-profit organization.  i wonder what conditions a for-profit partner would set for providing research funding? we always seem to have issues when private sector companies purchase rights to new technology in the 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 world, since each new clinical trial phase progression is then dependent on one particular company’s internal decision making and funding availability. if they do not feel that a product will make them at least $xyz, they often even cancel further research despite successful outcomes from initial trials.

in any case, going back to this study, the  artificial dermal papillae cells were grown from pluripotent stem cells.  such cells can be derived from human embryos (controversial) or a patient’s own skin cells (not controversial).  according to dr. terskikh, per one of the articles i linked above:

patients can donate their own ips cells, which can be grown into the replacement dermal papillae in “unlimited” quantities.”

note: ips (or ipsc) stands for induced pluripotent stem cells, which are generated from adult cells (as opposed to embryonic pluripotent stem cells, which are derived from early stage embryos).

besides the above advantage, another key benefit of this stem cell derived process is that it overcomes the ongoing problems researchers have had in trying to multiply existing human dermal papilla cells outside the body and then re-injecting them into the scalp.  the dermal papilla cells largely seem to  lose their hair-inducing properties when kept outside the body.  in fact in this very study the authors tried three experiments:

  1. transplanting human dermal papillae cells taken from adult scalps to the mice.  result = insignificant number of hairs generated.
  2. transplanting just human skin cells to the mice. result = insignificant number of hairs generated.
  3. transplanting dermal papilla cells grown/derived from human embryonic stem cells to the mice.   result = significant new hair generation!

besides dr. terskikh, the principal author of the paper is dr. ksenia gnedeva.  while the former has done work in many different areas (largely related to stem cells), the latter has focused a lot more on hair related research.  it seems like both of these researchers have published some of their research in russian.  this year, i hope to try and write more about 卡塔尔世界杯赛程表 research that is being conducted in countries such as russia and china, but is not being published in the english language.  perhaps i might have to hire some local students from those countries to help me?

update: ironically enough, someone fluent in russian was thinking along the same lines as me and actually managed to interview one of the article’s authors based in russia.  see more on bald truth talk forum member “bald russian”‘s phone interview with ekaterina vorotelya.  wish us-based researchers were as forthcoming!