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Hair Loss Treatments

Can Adenosine Reverse Hair Loss

Adenosine has been making waves in the hair loss community for the past decade. In fact, many companies have began to create shampoos and other topical solutions that contain Adenosine. Many believe that adenosine is even more effective than Rogaine (minoxidil) for regrowing hair. In this article, we will go over adenosine as a potential treatment for genetic hair loss.

What is Adenosine

Adenosine is both a chemical found in many living organisms and a medication. It is used to treat forms of tachycardia (abnormally fast heart rhythm). Adenosine is an enogenous purine nucleoside the controls many physiological processes. Ultimately, Adenisone helps in cellular energy transfer by forming molecules like adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Adenisone also plays a role in signaling several pathways and functions in the body by forming signalling molecules.

Clinical Comparison Between Adenosine and Minoxidil

In a study performed in 2013 by the Department of Dermatology in the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, studied the efficacy of each treatment. The study included 110 male patients suffering from mild to severe genetic hair loss. Fifty five of the patients received minoxidil 5% (group 1) and adenosine 0.75% (group 2) each. Later in the study, 16 patients were removed due to allergic reactions. After the study was concluded, the researchers found that adenosine was not statistically superior to minoxidil in terms of hair regrowth. However, patient satisfaction was significantly higher in group 2 those who received adenisone 0.75%. Researchers noted that patient satisfaction was primarly from the appearance of the hairs and the thickness of the hair follicles.

Study Finds That Adenosine Increases Anagen Hair Growth

In a study published in the Journal of Dermatology Japanese researchers found that adenosine upregulates the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor and fibroblast growth factor-7 in cultured dermal papilla cells. The study showed that adenosine was found to thicken thinning hair that was being affected by DHT. The study included 30 Japanese women with female pattern hair loss. The study was double-blind, randomized and a placebo-controlled study. The participants were given 0.75% adenosine lotion or a placebo lotion that was applied topically twice a day for 12 months. The study showed that adenosine was significantly superior to the placebo. According to the researchers adenosine increased the anagen hair growth rate and thickened the hair shaft diameter.


While the studies sound promising, it is important to remember that the sample size of the studies were small. Furthermore, androgenic alopecia (genetic hair loss) is caused by the hormone DHT. DHT binds to the androgen receptor in the hair follicle and gradually begins to shrink the hair follicles until they no longer grow. Adenosine does not inhibit the hormone DHT in anyway. Moreover, there are only two medications that have been approved by the FDA to treat hereditary hair loss, which are Propecia (finasteride) and Rogaine (minoxidil). Propecia (finasteride) is the only medication proven to reduce DHT by up to 70% and proven to stop hair loss completely in some individuals.