Sirna, a small biotech company that was working hard on finding a topical agent for permanent hair removal, was gobbled up by Merck a little ways back. For whatever reason, when Merck obtained Sirna, research was stopped in relation to a topical agent (SLO-17) that would interfer with the messenger RNA part of the cell. They had the biology and the chemistry parts pretty much figured out, but were having problems with the delivery system. So, perhaps that is why MERCK halted the effort. Going on my half-memory,there may have been a lawsuit or two against Merck, unrelated to the hair removal research division, that caused the company to re-evaluate their priorities. I’m only speculating here, so take it as such. I do know that it takes years and years and about a billion dollars to research, develop and market a new drug and then once it gets in the consumers hands, it won’t be inexpensive because the company has to recover all the money they invested over about 10 years to deliver a product that the consumer is clamouring for!
It is frustrating. I know the concepts are there for a topical hair removal agent, but cancer and erectile disfunction drugs take priority in the fight for the money to fund the intense effort that is required to get the product to the consumer.
Years ago, Dr.Angela Christiano from Columbia University was all the buzz. Some made it sound like she was going to be the savior of the hairy with her research. I don’t know what she is up to these days in that regard. I e-mailed her about her work a while ago and got no response, something I totally expected! The Charlie Rose link is dated (1998).