The invention relates to a double-stranded compound, preferably an oligoribonucleotide, which down-regulates the expression of a human p53 gene. The invention also relates to a pharmaceutical composition comprising the compound, or a vector capable of expressing the oligoribonucleotide compound, and a pharmaceutically acceptable carrier. The present invention also contemplates a method of treating a patient suffering from alopecia or acute renal failure or other diseases comprising administering to the patient the pharmaceutical composition in a therapeutically effective dose so as to thereby treat the patient. The alopecia may be induced by chemotherapy or radiotherapy, and the patient may be suffering from cancer, in particular breast cancer.

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