AntiCancer Inc. has formed a new division that will focus on bringingmelanin, delivered via liposomes, to hair follicles to restore color tograying hair.

The San Diego company, while using liposomes to transportantisense particles to the hair follicle to prevent hair loss duringchemotherapy, found the new application, Andrew Perry, president ofAntiCancer's new Consumer Products Division, told BioWorld.

"We found the liposomes would deliver melanin in the same way,"Perry said. "We feel this could be a major money-maker and we'duse this to finance our therapeutic areas of research."

Perry said the technology is being featured in various media inEurope, particularly in Sweden. "So we're probably going to licenseit first in Europe," he said. "We think it will be a cosmetic as opposedto a drug. We should be able to get on the market very rapidly,probably by the end of the year."

Perry said AntiCancer is looking for a marketing partner in Europe.

Melanin is the natural hair-coloring pigment. Perry said liposomestransport the melanin into the follicle, and hair grows with themelanin in it. Under a microscope, the melanin can be seen inside thehair shaft, he said.

The liposomes can be applied to the hair as a gel or possibly as ashampoo ingredient, he said, adding that it probably will be madeavailable in a number of different colors. He said the companyeventually hopes to deliver a gene for hair color into the follicle. _Jim Shrine

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