New hair loss treatments could be developed soon thanks to a scientific breakthrough made by Japanese scientists.
According to a survey conducted by the IFOP in 2015, 13% of French people declare that they suffer from baldness. With a majority of men since if only 2% of women are affected, baldness affects one in four men (25%).
If hair loss remains a sensitive subject, scientists may well have found the solution to overcome it. For this, Japanese researchers have studied the processes of growth and pigmentation of hair follicles. Thus, they managed to generate hair follicles in vitro. These findings were published in Science Advances on October 21.
For this discovery, the scientists relied on a recent technique, that of the culture of organoids. These are tiny versions of an organ where tissue development and pathology can be studied. “Organoids were a promising tool to elucidate the mechanisms of hair follicle morphogenesis in vitro“, explained Tatsuto Kageyama, assistant professor at the faculty of engineering of the National University of Yokohama, in the press release of this study.
Thus, the research team made hair follicle organoids. They report encouraging results. They have “produces fully mature hair follicles with long hair (about 3 mm in length over 23 days in culture)As this growth occurred, researchers could also monitor hair pigmentation.
A key medicine
Step two, they added a melanocyte-stimulating drug, which plays a key role in producing hair color pigmentation. Thanks to this, they improved the pigmentation of the hair. “In addition, by transplanting the hair follicle organoids, they achieved effective hair follicle regeneration with repeated hair cycles.“, underlines the press release.
Perhaps the hope of soon developing treatments to relieve male pattern baldness. “Our next step will be to use human-derived cells and test its application for drug development and for regenerative medicine.”says Junji Fukuda, a professor at Yokohama National University’s Faculty of Engineering.
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