New Studies Shed Light on the Biological Factors Causing Hair Loss
Two new studies out of New York and London have found genetic factors that lead to hair loss.
According to new research from the Departments of Dermatology and Genetics and Development at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, patients who have the rare “atrichia with papular lesions” balding condition lose their hair because of one specific gene, which is now being referred to as the “human hairless gene.”
Atrichia with papular lesions is a form of permanent hair loss that first begins when patients are only a few months old. It also occurs right around the same time that papular keratin cysts begin to form on the body.
This hairless gene has the molecular function of regulating a subset of other hair genes. This special, biological role is most likely why hairless gene mutations contribute to atrichia with papular lesions’ pathogenesis. Researchers are hopeful that that the study could lead to new opportunities to develop ways to prevent and treat other rare kinds of hair loss or skin diseases like skin cancer.
“You can be affected by one or both sides of your family as far as genetic hair loss is concerned,” explains Bryce Cleveland, CEO of Scalp Aesthetics. “Once you’re experiencing hair loss, you can lose up to 100 hairs a day. With scalp pigmentation, you can get in front of the issue and control your look. Scalp pigmentation is long lasting and will serve you for years. You will avoid the look of hair loss, and be able to say ‘this is what I want to look like’ every day.”
The second study from the University of Melbourne and King’s College has found a protein that inhibits fat production while activating hair follicle growth, linking fat production and hair growth. The study confirms that changes in the cycle of hair growth will lead to fluctuations in skin’s underlying fat layer, which means that skin can actually regulate the production of fat.
The study’s findings have implications for the future of treatments for such problems as obesity, baldness, and permanent hair loss conditions, like alopecia.
Researchers say that this new research could potentially lead to a cream that could dissolve fat. The study’s results can also be used as a localized treatment for obesity, or as a means to replace fat lost in scar tissue.