At the annual meeting of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery in San Diego, the drug company Histogen revealed the results of its latest trial of a novel new treatment for hair loss. This new treatment is known as the Hair Stimulating Complex or HSC and is aimed at re-growing hair in areas of severe loss in middle-aged patients.
HSC is not a topical medication or an oral drug. Instead, doctors administer the treatment using intradermal injections directly into the scalp in areas affected by hair loss.
The HSC injections contain a blend of proteins and human growth factors. The proteins in the complex are intended to provide the hair-producing cells with fibers that can be used to synthesize new hair strands. Human growth factors are compounds found naturally in the human body that encourage cell growth and division and could spur dormant follicles to restart growth.
The trial included 56 men aged 40 to 59 who received injections and were carefully observed for 24 weeks. Halfway through the study, participants began showing signs of new growth with an average of a 19.1 percent increase in total hair counts. The injections were shown to be effective at re-growing hair in all regions of scalp, even in the temporal area, which is often one of the hardest to treat. In this region of the scalp alone, men averaged more than a 25 percent increase in hair counts by the 24th week of the study.
In addition to stimulating new growth in regions of baldness, HSC was shown to increase the thickness of the strands, strengthening their fibers to make breakage less likely. No side effects were reported among the participants. HSC has previously been tested in women with hair loss and found to make a positive impact in regrowth as well.
Much more testing will be needed before HSC becomes a readily available treatment for hair loss. If the drug ultimately receives FDA-approval, it will likely require a visit to a dermatologist or plastic surgeon for administering.