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Prohormones/Designer Steroids and Hair Loss.


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#1 henryv

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Posted 25 August 2011 - 06:58 PM

Part One.

Hair today, gone tomorrow.

At least, that's what it can seem like if you're one of the many men with a genetic predisposition to male pattern baldness - particularly if that is expedited by recreational steroid use.

Traditional hair-loss solutions have focused on the effect of the body's natural steroids, particularly testosterone and DHT. Testosterone is converted in the scalp by the enzyme 5alpha-reductase into dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. DHT is a much stronger androgen than testosterone, and in predisposed men it can cause follicles to shrink or "miniaturize". In turn, this shortens their lifespan and prevents them from producing hair normally, eventually leading to a receding hairline and/or spreading bald spot.

It is important to recognise that when synthetic anabolic steroids are used it isn't DHT that is causing this androgenic effect, but the steroids administered (or their metabolites), triggering the same effect through their actions at the androgen receptor.

5AR Inhibitors

The most common solution to MPB or androgenic alopecia involves preventing the conversion of testosterone to DHT, using a 5AR inhibitor like finasteride or dutasteride. These are steroids that are inactive as far as the androgen receptor is concerned, but they bind to the 5AR enzyme, thus preventing the enzyme from converting testosterone to DHT.

While this can be effective in preventing further hair loss by natural causes, these drugs are not without their own side effects (which can include impotence and gynecomastia), and they are ineffective at preventing hair loss caused by almost all modern prohormones and anabolic steroids.

The reason for this is due to steroid metabolism, and here's where we start to get technical.

DHT-based

Many of today's steroids are based on the (5a)DHT structure. This means that they cannot be 5a-reduced by 5AR, since they are already 5a-reduced steroids. So disabling the 5AR enzyme has no effect on their metabolism - they are still just as androgenic in the scalp.

Steroids in this (DHT-based, or 5a-reduced) class include superdrol, protodrol, methyl sten, furazadrol, epistane, phera, and many others.


Even those taking compounds that do contain a delta 4 double bond are not necessarily going to benefit from taking a 5a-reductase inhibitor.

Nandrolone

Nandrolone, unlike testosterone, actually becomes worse for hair loss (increases shedding/balding) when you prevent 5a-reduction (by using finasteride, for example). In order to understand why, you have to understand that the 5a-reduced metabolite of nandrolone (19-nor-DHT) is actually less androgenic than nandrolone.

Since this means that nandrolone is made less androgenic in tissues that have high concentrations of 5AR, it means that nandrolone is generally fairly "hair-safe".

As soon as you prevent that 5a-reduction (by administering finasteride), you remove the good things nandrolone has going for it (low relative androgenic properties) and increase androgenicity in areas with lots of 5AR (scalp, skin etc.). [1-3]

the bioreduction of the C-4, -5 double bond of testosterone by 5a-reductase occurs selectively from the alpha-face. The product of this reduction, 5a-DHT, assumes a chairlike conformation and has a higher AR affinity relative to testosterone.

Interestingly, the compound resulting from simultaneous 5a-reduction and removal of the 19-methyl group has a lower binding affinity than testosterone.


So a 5AR inhibitor is not a good idea with nandrolone. What about other 19-nors like dienolone or trenbolone?

Other 19-nor-4-enes

Actually, like the DHT compounds, 5AR inhibitors are ineffective with trenbolone and dienolone because the conjugated double bond system prevents the C4-C5 bond being reduced by the 5AR enzyme. [4-8]


Ok, so 5AR inhibitors are useless with DHT-based compounds, trenbolone, dienolone, and will actually increase hair loss with nandrolone. What else is there?

1,4-dienes

Another class of hormones that deserve separate consideration are the 1,4-dienes. These have the C4-C5 double bond of testosterone, but also have the C1-C2 double bond of 1-testosterone. These compounds include boldenone, boldione, dianabol, 17a-methyl-1,4-androstadiene-diol (M1,4ADD), oral turinabol, and halodrol.

In vivo reduction of the delta-4 double bond (to produce 1-dehydro metabolites) does occur, however crucially they selectively reduce to 5b-reduced compounds. 5b-reduced compounds are inactive, they bind poorly or not at all to the androgen receptor, and so do not exert any significant androgenic effects (so they are not a concern for hair loss).

Proposed metabolism scheme for steroids with androst-1,4-diene-3-one structure

M1 concerns the reduction of the C-4,5 double bond leading mainly to the 5b-H isomer. The simultaneous presence of a C-1,2 double bond, as occurs in methandienone and boldenone molecules, inhibits the 5a-reduction.



[9-12]

Since finasteride is an inhibitor of 5b-reductase as well as 5a-reductase, finasteride may again do more harm than good when it comes to hair loss, when used in conjunction with 1,4-diene compounds. [13]

Conclusions

While finasteride for naturally occurring hair loss is effective for many, it serves little to no purpose in conjunction with most synthetic anabolic steroid or prohormone cycles, and for some would actually increase the risk of hair loss. It may be of some use to those on a testosterone-only cycle, though anyone considering it should consider the risk of attendant side effects.

References:
[1] Steroids 74 (2009) 172-197
[2] J Steroid Biochem 1985;22:831-6.
[3] J Steroid Biochem 1982;17:653-60.
[4] Biol. Mass Spectrom. 20 (1991) 459-466.
[5] Recent advances in doping analysis (2). (1995) 269-274.
[6] J Chromatgr 1991:564:485 92.
[7] Steroids 75 (2010) 377-389
[8] Steroids 75 (2010) 643-652
[9] J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2009 May;115(1-2):44-61.
[10] J. Steroid Biochem. Mol. Biol. 38 (1991) 441-464.
[11] Biol. Mass Spectrom. 21 (1992) 3-16.
[12] Chem Res Toxicol 2003;16:1338-58.
[13] J Biol Chem. 2009 July 24; 284(30): 19786-19790.


Coming in part 2: Alternative solutions.

Edited by henryv, 26 August 2011 - 09:22 AM.

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#2 henryv

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Posted 25 August 2011 - 06:59 PM

Reserved for part two.
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#3 henryv

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 04:07 AM

good read, henry, thanks for posting.

For those of us guys who are NOT subject to male pattern baldness (like myself), my bropedia (The New Encyclopedia of Broscience, 2011 edition) says that we don't have a whole lot to worry about when it comes to hair loss and steroid use (presumably because we would have lower natural DHT levels?). But if an androgenic hormone affects the androgen receptors in the scalp the same way, how could I be any less susceptible to hair loss on cycle than anyone else?


How do you know at 21 that you're not subject to MPB?
If, genetically, you aren't predisposed to MPB, I don't think any level of androgen use will cause it.

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#4 henryv

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 08:24 AM

Male pattern baldness comes from your mother's side of the family, right? My grandpa and great grandpa had full heads of hair, so I took that to mean that I'm not predisposed to it


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From what I understand there's some truth to that, but I think there's more to it.

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#5 Dr.Abs

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 10:22 AM

From what I understand there's some truth to that, but I think there's more to it.


I'm hypothesizing here, but my guess would be that the gene responsible for MPB is located on the non-homologous part of the X chromosome, and that it's a recessive allele.

Since every male will get his X chromosome from his mother, & the mother has 2 X chromosomes, there are 2 possibilities:

a- the mother has it on both of of her X chromosomes & her son will definitely be getting that genetic trait passed down to him.

b- she has it on one of her X chromosomes, so her son has a 50% chance of getting it.

The key in the expression of this phenotype seems to be having enough androgens in a person's system to activate that gene.

Someone might ask: Why doesn't a female have MPB when she has the corresponding gene on both of her X chromosomes ?

The answer is she simply does not have enough androgens in her system.

This can be observed by looking at female bb'ers who abuse AAS; you can notice what looks like the beginning of MPB.

Please note:

I am not a M.D. & can not offer you any medical advice.
"Dr.Abs" is a fictional character; everything said on his part is for entertainment purposes only.




#6 reformathard

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 12:13 PM

so if already taking finasteride and deciding to use halodrol or superdrol, its not going to help; but not necessarily hurt either like it would regarding 1,4-diene compounds.

#7 henryv

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 12:16 PM

so if already taking finasteride and deciding to use halodrol or superdrol, its not going to help; but not necessarily hurt either like it would regarding 1,4-diene compounds.


It's not going to make superdrol worse. It could potentially make halodrol worse, but I doubt by much.
Halodrol is a 1,4-diene.

Edited by henryv, 26 August 2011 - 12:18 PM.

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#8 Just99

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 12:21 AM

It's not going to make superdrol worse. It could potentially make halodrol worse, but I doubt by much.
Halodrol is a 1,4-diene.


I'm not sure, but the C4-Cl might also make halodrol a poor substrate for 5B-Reductase. This could be one theory as to why hdrol seems to have slightly greater potency than m1,4add.

#9 henryv

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 04:44 AM

I'm not sure, but the C4-Cl might also make halodrol a poor substrate for 5B-Reductase. This could be one theory as to why hdrol seems to have slightly greater potency than m1,4add.


I agree. This is why I said it might make it a bit worse, but probably not by much.

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#10 Just99

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 09:31 AM

I agree. This is why I said it might make it a bit worse, but probably not by much.


I caught that but figured I'd further elaborate for those who are curious and might not know.

#11 henryv

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 11:01 AM

I caught that but figured I'd further elaborate for those who are curious and might not know.


I'm going to take your lack of criticism as tacit approval of the article so far.

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#12 Happy234

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Posted 01 September 2011 - 02:04 AM

Nice Thread Henry.

I shredded more than usual on 14ad at 600 mgs, maybe i was going though a telegan phase. If I get to do another cycle I am doing 14ad again and will keep an eye on it again


This guy is a buddy of mine from the AM thread years back we all got together and contributed to great hairloss prevention thread stuickied in the anabolics sections back in 2004( yes Ive been using prohormones that long @ 23 years old) Luckly ive used ket shampoo since 23 and keep my head. also used some other stuff aa,

this guys been doing it a while

Hair Loss From Steroids - YouTube

#13 henryv

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 04:16 AM

It has come to my attention that people aren't reading this article right.

1,4-dienes

Another class of hormones that deserve separate consideration are the 1,4-dienes. These have the C4-C5 double bond of testosterone, but also have the C1-C2 double bond of 1-testosterone. These compounds include boldenone, boldione, dianabol, 17a-methyl-1,4-androstadiene-diol (M1,4ADD), oral turinabol, and halodrol.

In vivo reduction of the delta-4 double bond (to produce 1-dehydro metabolites) does occur, however crucially they selectively reduce to 5b-reduced compounds. 5b-reduced compounds are inactive, they bind poorly or not at all to the androgen receptor, and so do not exert any significant androgenic effects (so they are not a concern for hair loss).


This paragraph means that the 5b-reduced metabolites of 1,4-dienes are not a concern for hair loss. The original steroids administered (halodrol or whatever) absolutely do pose a risk for hair loss.

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#14 henryv

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 04:17 AM

I shredded more than usual on 14ad


Shedded.

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#15 Right Hook

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 04:19 PM

Henry are you close to part two? My hairline would appreciate it.

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#16 henryv

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 04:30 PM

Henry are you close to part two? My hairline would appreciate it.


Haha. Tbh I had forgotten about this thread. I am currently working on a "does epi convert to phera???" article that I'm about halfway through. I also plan an article on 11b-HSD1, a PH/DS profile on 11-oxo/11-KT, Name That Steroid round 10, and maybe starting my own blog. I'm not sure where this piece (or indeed HenryV's learn technical stuff here thread) fits into the order of things. Plus amazon just despatched me two new xbox games...
The upshot of this piece is probably going to be that a topical anti-androgen is likely to be the best option. I think I'm going to consult others on some details before I write part two. I don't know enough about things like lipophilicity, hydrophobic molecules, systemic vs. topical effects of transdermals etc. to write anything decent on the subject at the moment.

Edited by henryv, 12 October 2011 - 04:32 PM.

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#17 Right Hook

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 08:00 PM

Dommit. Well if you get bored check out the following shampoo. The have some research on their site claiming impressive results...but I'm assuming it's paid for by them...

Nisim Shampoo, Hair Loss Shampoo, baldness,

Either way I will probably pick up a bottle. I'm thinking about doing a "hair log". Where I take a pic of the crown of my head after each hair cut and post what I'm doing about it....1 post a month just to see progress and/or hair loss.

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#18 MR.LEFTHOOK

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 11:01 PM

Dommit. Well if you get bored check out the following shampoo. The have some research on their site claiming impressive results...but I'm assuming it's paid for by them...

Nisim Shampoo, Hair Loss Shampoo, baldness,

Either way I will probably pick up a bottle. I'm thinking about doing a "hair log". Where I take a pic of the crown of my head after each hair cut and post what I'm doing about it....1 post a month just to see progress and/or hair loss.

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#19 manic my friend

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 07:05 AM

Haha. Tbh I had forgotten about this thread. I am currently working on a "does epi convert to phera???" article that I'm about halfway through. I also plan an article on 11b-HSD1, a PH/DS profile on 11-oxo/11-KT, Name That Steroid round 10, and maybe starting my own blog. I'm not sure where this piece (or indeed HenryV's learn technical stuff here thread) fits into the order of things. Plus amazon just despatched me two new xbox games...
The upshot of this piece is probably going to be that a topical anti-androgen is likely to be the best option. I think I'm going to consult others on some details before I write part two. I don't know enough about things like lipophilicity, hydrophobic molecules, systemic vs. topical effects of transdermals etc. to write anything decent on the subject at the moment.


very interested in this. this is a subject i've recently started reading on. way over my head.

#20 JBerto

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 01:38 PM

I think I read somewhere that hair loss was related more to the conversion of Test to DHT than taking DTH-based compounds (I don't know if that's true or not)

#21 henryv

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 02:52 PM

I think I read somewhere that hair loss was related more to the conversion of Test to DHT than taking DHT-based compounds (I don't know if that's true or not)


To an extent, yes. 5aR is highly concentrated in skin and scalp which leads to lots of DHT there after administration of test-based compounds.

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#22 Alcatraz

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 12:10 PM

I would like to see a ranking list of compounds most likely to cause hair loss. Don't know if this is possible, considering all the variables, but at least if people knew which compounds are more likely to cause hair loss, they could make better choices.

#23 Fz2fast4u

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 12:48 PM

Now do you think hairloss during cycle becomes permanent or will it go back to normal after cycle is over.

#24 henryv

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 01:11 PM

I would like to see a ranking list of compounds most likely to cause hair loss. Don't know if this is possible, considering all the variables, but at least if people knew which compounds are more likely to cause hair loss, they could make better choices.


It goes too far into broscience for me to attempt it. Any A:A ratios are only applicable at the minimum effective dosage for rats, not at supraphysiological doses in humans. One man's experience is often different to another's, so all you'd end up with is a bunch of opinions that wouldn't necessarily bear true for anyone reading.

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#25 Alcatraz

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 01:17 PM

I was afraid of that. Thanks for the response.




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