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Response of Topical Capsaicin in Alopecia Areata

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ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00176969
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : September 15, 2005
Last Update Posted : June 2, 2014
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
University of Minnesota

Brief Summary:
It has been postulated that Alopecia Areata (AA) is, at least in part, a neurologically mediated disease. Research supporting this theory includes the finding that nerves surrounding the hair follicles are collapsed. We want to take this research a step further and show that not only are these perifollicular nerves collapsed, but that their function is also impaired.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Alopecia Areata Drug: Capsaicin Phase 4

Detailed Description:
To assess the function of perifollicular scalp nerves in AA we will look at the response of these nerves to the topical medication capsaicin. Under normal circumstances topical capsaicin is known to target nerves in the peripheral nervous system causing short-term release of the neuropeptide Substance P (SP) as well as long-term transient depletion of SP. We expect the AA patients will respond abnormally to topical capsaicin treatment.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Enrollment : 24 participants
Allocation: Non-Randomized
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Diagnostic
Official Title: Perifollicular Nerves in Alopecia Areata: Response to Topical Capsaicin
Study Start Date : August 1997
Study Completion Date : June 2000

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Drug Information available for: Capsaicin

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Topical capsaicin will quantitatively decrease the amount of Substance P in the scalp of AA patients.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. The scalps of AA patients may be less sensitive to stimuli.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 70 Years   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Must have alopecia totalis or universalis.
  • Be in good health.
  • Not be taking any medications including topical medications
  • Be 18 years or older.
  • Be willing to apply study medication or vehicle as directed, comply with instructions and commit to follow-up visits.
  • Not have had hair chemically treated (including colored hair, permed hair, etc) within the month prior to the study.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Absence of extensive alopecia areata.
  • People not in good health.
  • People taking medications.
  • Allergies to capsaicin.
  • Presence of irritated or visibly inflamed scalp.
  • Having had hair chemically treated (including colored hair, permed hair, etc.) within the month prior to study.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT00176969

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United States, Minnesota
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States, 55455
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Minnesota
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Principal Investigator: Maria Hordinsky, MD University of Minnesota
Principal Investigator: Marna Ericson, Ph D University of Minnesota
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Responsible Party: University of Minnesota
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00176969    
Other Study ID Numbers: 9707M00122
First Posted: September 15, 2005    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: June 2, 2014
Last Verified: May 2014
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Alopecia Areata
Hair Diseases
Skin Diseases
Pathological Conditions, Anatomical
Dermatologic Agents
Sensory System Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Agents
Physiological Effects of Drugs