The biology of hair follicles.

Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Eppendorf, University of Hamburg, Germany.
New England Journal of Medicine (Impact Factor: 54.42). 09/1999; 341(7):491-7. DOI: 10.1056/NEJM199908123410706
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, various immunosuppressant drugs have been shown to induce hair growth in normal hair as well as in alopecia areata and androgenic alopecia; however, the responsible mechanism has not yet been fully elucidated. In this study, we investigate the influence of mycophenolate (MPA), an immunosuppressant, on the proliferation of human dermal papilla cells (hDPCs) and on the growth of human hair follicles following catagen induction with interferon (IFN)-γ. IFN-γ was found to reduce β-catenin, an activator of hair follicle growth, and activate glycogen synthase kinase (GSK)-3β, and enhance expression of the Wnt inhibitor DKK-1 and catagen inducer transforming growth factor (TGF)-β2. IFN-γ inhibited expression of ALP and other dermal papillar cells (DPCs) markers such as Axin2, IGF-1, and FGF 7 and 10. MPA increased β-catenin in IFN-γ-treated hDPCs leading to its nuclear accumulation via inhibition of GSK3β and reduction of DKK-1. Furthermore, MPA significantly increased expression of ALP and other DPC marker genes but inhibited expression of TGF-β2. Therefore, we demonstrate for the first time that IFN-γ induces catagen-like changes in hDPCs and in hair follicles via inhibition of Wnt/β-catenin signaling, and that MPA stabilizes β-catenin by inhibiting GSK3β leading to increased β-catenin target gene and DP signature gene expression, which may, in part, counteract IFN-γ-induced catagen in hDPCs.
    International Journal of Molecular Sciences 09/2014; 15(9):16800-16815. · 2.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Alopecia is an exceedingly prevalent problem effecting men and women of all ages. The standard of care for alopecia involves either transplanting existing hair follicles to bald areas or attempting to stimulate existing follicles with topical and/or oral medication. Yet, these treatment options are fraught with problems of cost, side effects, and, most importantly, inadequate long-term hair coverage. Innovative cell-based therapies have focused on the dermal papilla cell as a way to grow new hair in previously bald areas. However, despite this attention, many obstacles exist, including retention of dermal papilla inducing ability and maintenance of dermal papilla productivity after several passages of culture. The use of adipocyte lineage cells, including adipose-derived stem cells, has shown promise as a cell-based solution to regulate hair regeneration and may help in maintaining or increasing dermal papilla cells inducing hair ability. In this review, we highlight recent advances in the understanding of the cellular contribution and regulation of dermal papilla cells and summarize adipocyte lineage cells in hair regeneration.
    Journal of tissue engineering. 01/2014; 5:2041731414556850.
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    ABSTRACT: Hair loss in humans is perplexing and raises many hypothetical explanations. This paper suggests that hair loss in humans is metabolically related to encephalization; and that hair covered hominids would have been unable to evolve large brains because of a dietary restriction of several amino acids which are essential for hair and brain development. We use simulations to imply that hair loss must have preceded increase in brain size & volume. In this respect we see hair loss as a major force in human evolution. We assume that hair reduction required favorable climatic conditions and must have been quick. Using evolutionary and ecological time scales, we pinpoint hair loss to a period around 2.2-2.4 million years ago. The dating is further supported by a rapid selection at that time of the sialic acid deletion mutation which may have protected growing human brains against calcium ion flux. In summary we view encephalization, in part, as a metabolic trade-off between hair and brain. Other biochemical changes may have intervened in the process too; and the deletion mutation of sialic acid hydroxylation may have been involved as well.
    SpringerPlus 01/2014; 3:562.

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