A new FDA approved drug helps in restoring hair in people suffering from alopecia areata. In case of People who suffer from this medical problem, some immune cells destroy follicles in them. Alopecia areata is a common autoimmune disease which results in hair loss. The researchers at Columbia University Medical Centre (CUMC) identify those immune cells which cause hair loss. They have also tested an FDA approved medicine, which can destroy the immune cells resulting in hair growth.
The initial results of the ongoing clinical trial have been recently reported. The medicine has been able to help in complete hair regrowth in case of several people suffering from alopecia areata. The medicine is helpful in case of patients suffering from moderate to severe instances of the problem. According to the research results, patients who used the medicine saw hair regrowth within five months of the treatment.
If the ongoing research produces consistent positive results for patients suffering from alopecia areata, then it will be a great relief for people who are losing hair and suffering from it. The researchers expect a dramatic positive impact on the lives of people who will get rid of the hair loss problem using the new medicine.
Alopecia areata is a dreaded disease that results in hair loss that may cause disfiguration. It is a problem that affects people at different ages. It affects both men and women. The patient loses hair in patches. Some of the patients may also suffer from facial and body hair loss. Till now, there was no treatment for such hair loss and restoration of hair. As a result of such severe hair loss, the patients suffering from this disease often suffer from psychological stress and emotional suffering. In case of patients suffering from alopecia areata, the immune system cells affect the hair follicle base, due to which the hair falls out. It also forces the hair follicles to a dormant stage and so hair regrowth does not happen. Previously, scientists were not sure about the cells responsible for such hair loss. Four years ago, a study of over 1000 patients suffering from the problem found the root cause of the hair loss issue. A danger signal in the hair follicles of the people suffering from alopecia areata works as the attraction of the immune cells to the follicle, which starts the attack.
The researchers tried two JAK inheritors, a new class of drugs, ruxolitinib and tofacitinib to block the immune pathways found in the research and to stop the attacks of the hair follicles by the T cells. The drug tested on mice showed that the hair regrowth happened within 12 weeks. The effect of the new drugs seems to be long-lasting and hair growth developed during the application of the medicine sustained for several months even after completion of the treatment.
In some of the initial participants of the study complete hair growth was seen within 4 to 5 months of the treatment. The medicine was also successful in eliminating the attacking T cells from the scalp of the patients.
Even though more testing is required to see the benefits of ruxolitinib, it is a great news for the physicians and patients. Since the disease has been completely studied and the root cause of the problem was found along with a solution to get rid of it, within some time, more clinical trials will help in finding a more effective use and dosage of the new FDA approved drug. With that efficiency demonstrated by the new drug, patients suffering from this devastating disease will be able to feel better about the new solution.