BBC NEWS
BBCi CATEGORIES   TV   RADIO   COMMUNICATE   WHERE I LIVE   INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC News UK Edition
 You are in: Health  
News Front Page
World
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
Medical notes
Education
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
CBBC News
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Thursday, 8 August, 2002, 13:53 GMT 14:53 UK
Cancer drug restores hair colour
Grey hair
Pill could add colour
A drug developed to treat leukaemia has been found to have surprising side effect - it appears able to restore colour to grey hair.

French doctors who treated 133 cancer patients with the drug Gleevec found that five men and four women who started out with grey hair ended up with their old colour back.

The doctors, led by Gabriel Etienne, of the Universite Victor Segalen in Bordeaux, published their findings in the New England Journal of Medicine.

They are keen to know whether other doctors have noticed the same effect.

One of the doctors said the effect may actually have been found in even more patients, but it was difficult to determine the true numbers as some of the patients had dyed their hair.

Gleevec
Gleevec is a promising cancer treatment
The process of color restoration usually took about five months, although in one patient the hair colour returned after 14 months of therapy.

One of the doctors, Francois-Xavier Mahon said people should not be taking the drug to restore hair colour.

But he said laboratory studies were under way to explore the surprising side effect.

Gleevec is made by Swiss drugs company Novartis.

Known in the UK as Glivec, the drug was launched in November 2001 as a treatment for a deadly form of cancer called chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML).

The drug, which works by precisely targeting the molecules thought to cause the cancer, has produced highly promising results in clinical trials on over 7,500 patients world-wide.

It normalised the blood count in over 90% of patients, and reduced leukaemia cells in the bone marrow.

The drug has also produced promising results in treatment of a rare terminal intestinal cancer known as Gastro Intestinal Stromal Tumour (GIST).

See also:

28 May 02 | Health
27 Nov 01 | Health
01 Oct 01 | Scotland
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Health stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Health stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | World | UK | England | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales |
Politics | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology |
Health | Education | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes