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TREATMENT OF ALOPECIA AREATA WITH TOPICAL GARLIC EXTRACT

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  • Treatment.com Inc.
  • University Of Kufa Faculty of pharmacy

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Abstract: Background: Alopecia areata is a non scarring localized hair fall, probably of autoimmune ateology, that responds to treatment with many topically applied irritant substances. Garlic had been known for a long time by its unique chemical composition that has many pharmacological implications. Objective: To determine the efficacy of topical garlic extract in the treatment of alopecia areata. Methods: Ten patients complaining of single or multiple patches of alopecia areata on the scalp region (total of 18 patches) were enrolled in this study from July 2006 to July 2007, in the out patient clinic in Najaf city. All patches were treated by topical garlic extract twice daily, for two months. Re-growth of terminal coarse hairs was evaluated every two weeks. Results: Four females and six males were studied, their ages ranged from 10 – 45 years (mean 27 yrs.). Total of 18 patches of alopecia areata were treated. All patients (100%) responded to this treatment. Hair growth started by the end of second week in eight patches (44.4%), within four weeks in seven patches (38.9%), and within six weeks in three patches (16.7%). Erythema was observed in all patients, in addition to itching in 8 patches (44.4%) and burning sensation in 5 patches (27.7%). Conclusions: Garlic is an efficient and rapid topical treatment for alopecia areata. It is cheep, available and with negligible side effects.
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330
Kufa Med. Journal 2009. VOL.12 No.1 ___________________________
TREATMENT OF ALOPECIA AREATA WITH TOPICAL
GARLIC EXTRACT
Dr. Azar H. Maluki, DDV, FICMS, CABDV.*
Dr. Thikrha A. Mahmood, Msc. Community Medicine. **
Dr. Qabas N. Hadi, Msc. Biology. ***
*Assist. Prof. Head of Dep. Of Dermatology, University of Kufa, College of Medicine.
**Assist. Lecturer, Dep. of Community Medicine, University of Kufa, College of
Medicine.
***Assist. Lecturer, Dep. of Microbiology, University of Kufa, College of Pharmacy.
Keywords: Alopecia areata, Garlic extract
Correspondance and reprints to:
Dr. Azar Maluki, P.O. Box (450), AL-Najaf post office, Najaf, Iraq.
Email: azarmaluki@yahoo.com
ﺔﺻﻼﺨﻟﺍ:
ﺔﺳﺍﺭﺪﻟﺍ ﺔﻣﺪﻘﻣ: ﺮﻌﺷ ﻂﻗﺎﺴﺗ ﺐﺒﺴﺗ ﻲﺘﻟﺍ ﺔﻴﻋﺎﻨﻤﻟﺍ ﺽﺍﺮﻣﻻﺍ ﻦﻣ ﺐﻠﻌﺜﻟﺍ ءﺍﺩ ﺮﺒﺘﻌﻳ ﺝﻼﻌﻠﻟ ﻞﺑﺎﻗ ﻮﻫﻭ ﻲﻌﺿﻮﻣ
ﺔﻴﺋﺎﻴﻤﻴﻜﻟﺍ ﺩﺍﻮﻤﻟﺍ ﻦﻣ ﺪﻳﺪﻌﻟﺍ ﻰﻠﻋ ﻪﺋﺍﻮﺘﺣﺎﺑ ﻑﻭﺮﻌﻤﻟﺍ ﻡﻮﺜﻟﺍ ﺓﺩﺎﻣ ﺎﻬﻨﻤﺿ ﻦﻣﻭ ﺪﻠﺠﻠﻟ ﺔﺷﺪﺨﻤﻟﺍ ﺔﻴﺒﻄﻟﺍ ﺕﺍﺮﻀﺤﺘﺴﻤﻟﺎﺑ
ﻲﺟﻼﻌﻟﺍ ﻝﻮﻌﻔﻤﻟﺍ ﺕﺍﺫ.
ﺔﺳﺍﺭﺪﻟﺍ ﻑﺪﻫ: ﺎﻴﻌﺿﻮﻣ ﺐﻠﻌﺜﻟﺍ ءﺍﺩ ﺝﻼﻋ ﻲﻓ ﻡﻮﺜﻟﺍ ﺓﺩﺎﻣ ﺺﻠﺨﺘﺴﻣ ﺓءﺎﻔﻛ ﻢﻴﻴﻘﺗ. "
ﺔﺳﺍﺭﺪﻟﺍ ﻖﺋﺍﺮﻃ: ﺕﻻﺎﺣ ﺓﺮﺸﻋ ﺔﺳﺍﺭﺩ ﻢﺗ ﺔﻘﻄﻨﻣ ﻲﻓ ﺩﺪﻌﺘﻤﻟﺍ ﻭﺍ ﺩﺮﻔﻨﻤﻟﺍ ﻲﻌﺿﻮﻤﻟﺍ ﺐﻠﻌﺜﻟﺍ ءﺍﺩ ﻦﻣ ﻥﻮﻧﺎﻌﻳ ﻦﻤﻣ
ﺯﻮﻤﺗ ﻦﻣ ﺓﺮﺘﻔﻠﻟ ﻒﺠﻨﻟﺍ ﺔﻨﻳﺪﻣ ﻲﻓ ﺱﺍﺮﻟﺍ2006 ﺯﻮﻤﺗ ﻰﻟﺍ2007 . ﻮﻫ ﻊﻘﺒﻟﺍ ﻉﻮﻤﺠﻣ ﻎﻠﺑ18 ﺔﻌﻘﺑ . ﺝﻼﻌﻟﺍ ﻥﺎﻛ
ﺎﻴﻣﻮﻳ ﻥﺎﺗﺮﻣ ﺢﺴﻤﻟﺍ ﺭﺮﻜﻳﻭ ﻂﻗﺎﺴﺘﻟﺍ ﺔﻘﻄﻨﻣ ﻲﻓ ﻡﻮﺜﻟﺍ ﺔﺒﺣ ﺺﻠﺨﺘﺴﻤﻟ ﺮﺷﺎﺒﻤﻟﺍ ﻚﻟﺪﻟﺍ ﺔﻘﻳﺮﻄﺑ .ﻼﻌﻟﺍ ﺓﺮﺘﻓ ﺕﺮﻤﺘﺳﺍ
ﻦﻴﻋﻮﺒﺳﺍ ﻞﻛ ﻢﺘﻳ ﺮﻌﺸﻟﺍ ﻮﻤﻧ ﺺﺤﻓ ﻥﺎﻛﻭ ﻦﻳﺮﻬﺷ ﺓﺪﻣ.
ﺔﺳﺍﺭﺪﻟﺍ ﺞﺋﺎﺘﻧ: ﻦﻴﺑ ﻢﻫﺭﺎﻤﻋﺍ ﺖﺣﻭﺍﺮﺗ ﺭﻮﻛﺫ ﺖﺳﻭ ﺙﺎﻧﺍ ﻊﺑﺭﺍ ﻰﻠﻋ ﺕﻻﺎﺤﻟﺍ ﺖﻠﻤﺘﺷﺍ10 ﻰﻟﺍ45 ﺔﻨﺳ) ﻂﺳﻮﺘﻣ
ﺮﻤﻌﻟﺍ27 ﺔﻨﺳ .( ﻥﺎﻛ ﺔﺠﻟﺎﻌﻤﻟﺍ ﻊﻘﺒﻟﺍ ﻉﻮﻤﺠﻣ18 ﺔﻌﻘﺑ . ﺮﻌﺸﻟﺍ ﻮﻤﻧ ﺃﺪﺑ ﺚﻴﺣ ﺕﻻﺎﺤﻟﺍ ﻊﻴﻤﺟ ﻲﻓ ﺓﺪﻴﺟ ﺔﺑﺎﺠﺘﺳﻻﺍ ﺖﻧﺎﻛ
ﻉﻮﺒﺳﻻﺍ ﻲﻓ ﻊﻘﺑ ﺔﻴﻧﺎﻤﺛ ﻲﻓ ﻲﻧﺎﺜﻟﺍ)44.4 ( % ﻊﻘﺑ ﺔﻌﺒﺳ ﻲﻓ ﻊﺑﺍﺮﻟﺍ ﻉﻮﺒﺳﻻﺍ ﻲﻓﻭ)38.9 (% ﺱﺩﺎﺴﻟﺍ ﻉﻮﺒﺳﻻﺍ ﻲﻓﻭ
ﻊﻘﺑ ﺔﺛﻼﺛ ﻲﻓ)16.7 .(% ﻲﻓ ﺔﻳﺪﻠﺟ ﺔﻜﺣ ﻰﻟﺍ ﺔﻓﺎﺿﺍ ﻊﻘﺒﻟﺍ ﺔﻓﺎﻛ ﻲﻓ ﺪﻠﺠﻟﺍ ﺭﺍﺮﻤﺣﺍ ﻰﻠﻋ ﺔﻴﺒﻧﺎﺠﻟﺍ ﺽﺍﺮﻋﻻﺍ ﺕﺮﺼﺘﻗﺍ
ﻊﻘﺑ ﺔﻴﻧﺎﻤﺛ)44.4 (% ﻊﻘﺑ ﺔﺴﻤﺧ ﻲﻓ ﺪﻠﺠﻟﺍ ﻲﻓ ﺔﻗﺮﺣﻭ)27.7.(%
ﺝﺎﺘﻨﺘﺳﻻﺍ: ﺐﻠﻌﺜﻟﺍ ءﺍﺩ ﺕﻻﺎﺣ ﺝﻼﻋ ﻲﻓ ﺔﻌﻳﺮﺴﻟﺍﻭ ﺔﺤﺟﺎﻨﻟﺍ ﺔﻴﺟﻼﻌﻟﺍ ﻕﺮﻄﻟﺍ ﻦﻣ ﺎﻴﻌﺿﻮﻣ ﻡﻮﺜﻟﺍ ﻡﺍﺪﺨﺘﺳﺍ ﺮﺒﺘﻌﻳ
ﺔﻴﺒﻧﺎﺠﻟﺍ ﺽﺍﺮﻋﻻﺍ ﻦﻣ ﻦﻜﻤﻣ ﺪﺣ ﻰﻧﺩﺍ ﺭﻮﻬﻇ ﻊﻣ ﻲﻌﺿﻮﻤﻟﺍ.
ﺢﻴﺗﺎﻔﻤﻟﺍ :ﻡﻮﺜﻟﺍ ﺺﻠﺨﺘﺴﻣ ، ﺐﻠﻌﺜﻟﺍ ءﺍﺩ .
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Kufa Med. Journal 2009. VOL.12 No.1 ___________________________
Abstract:
Background: Alopecia areata is a non scarring localized hair fall, probably of
autoimmune ateology, that responds to treatment with many topically applied irritant
substances. Garlic had been known for a long time by its unique chemical composition
that has many pharmacological implications.
Objective: To determine the efficacy of topical garlic extract in the treatment of
alopecia areata.
Methods: Ten patients complaining of single or multiple patches of alopecia areata on
the scalp region (total of 18 patches) were enrolled in this study from July 2006 to July
2007, in the out patient clinic in Najaf city. All patches were treated by topical garlic
extract twice daily, for two months. Re-growth of terminal coarse hairs was evaluated
every two weeks.
Results: Four females and six males were studied, their ages ranged from 10 45 years
(mean 27 yrs.). Total of 18 patches of alopecia areata were treated. All patients (100%)
responded to this treatment. Hair growth started by the end of second week in eight
patches (44.4%), within four weeks in seven patches (38.9%), and within six weeks in
three patches (16.7%). Erythema was observed in all patients, in addition to itching in 8
patches (44.4%) and burning sensation in 5 patches (27.7%).
Conclusions: Garlic is an efficient and rapid topical treatment for alopecia areata. It is
cheep, available and with negligible side effects.
INTRODUCTION:
Alopecia areata is characterized by round or oval patches of nonscarring hair loss.
Men and women are equally affected and the prevalence is almost the same for all
ethnic groups [1],[2],[3] .It is a common disease and at any given time, about 0.2% of
people are involved with alopecia areata and 1.7% of the populations experience an
episode of alopecia areata during their lifetime [4],[5],[6] .
The etiology and pathogenesis of alopecia areata is still uncertain, but many factors
have been have been described in its pathogenesis, e.g., genetic, family history, the
atopic state, nonspecific immune and organ-specific autoimmune reactions, possible
emotional stress, infectious agents and neurological factors.
A range of treatments have been tried for the treatment of alopecia areata, such as
contact sensitizers, immunomodulators and biologic response modifiers [7],[8],[9],[10],[11]
.Though different medications with various efficacies have been used for long, no
definitive treatment has been introduced yet [1] .Garlic, onion and aromatherapy are
claimed to have hair growth promoting properties but the scientific basis is still lacking
[12],[13],[14] .Bacteria, fungi, protozoa and viruses have been shown to be sensitive to
crushed garlic preparations. Moreover, garlic has been reported to reduce blood lipids
and to have anticancer properties. The main active component present in large quantities
in garlic cloves is alliin , an oxygenated sulfur amino acid. In crushed garlic, alliin is
converted to allicin , which gives the garlic its therapeutic properties [15],[16] .
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AIM OF THE STUDY:
To determine the efficacy of topical garlic extract in the treatment of alopecia areata.
PATIENTS AND METHODS : This study was a therapeutic trial to test the efficacy of topical garlic extract for two
months in patients with alopecia areata. The study was carried out between July 2006
and July 2007, in the out patient clinic in Najaf. Plant material is Allium sativum L. The garlic was blended and the extract was
achieved by crushing. Garlic extract was rubbed on the alopecia patches, twice daily for
two months. Re-growth of terminal coarse hairs was evaluated every two weeks.
Patients selected met the inclusion criteria of the study. Inclusion criteria included patients above five years of age, having up to three hairless
patches, overall extension of patches less than 10 cm² and duration of disease less than
one month. The patients with history of previous treatment, pregnant and lactating
women, eyelash and eyebrow involvement, ophiasis pattern and history of sensitivity to
garlic were excluded from the study. Before enrolment, patients were not receiving treatment with any other form of topical
or systemic medication.
RESULTS: Ten patients were enrolled in this study according to the inclusion criteria, four
females and six males .Their ages ranged from 10 - 45 years (mean 27 yrs.). All of them
completed the study. Total of 18 patches of alopecia areata were treated. All patients (100%) responded to
this treatment. Hair growth started at the end of second week of treatment in eight
patches (44.4%), after four weeks in seven patches (38.9%), and within six weeks in
three patches (16.7%). Erythema was observed in all patients, in addition to itching in 8
patches (44.4%) and burning sensation in 5 patches (27.7%). The results are illustrated in Table 1 and Figure 1, Figure 2.
TABLE 1: Course of treatment of alopecia areata
Percentage No. of cured patches
Duration of
Treatment
44.4% 8 Two weeks
38.9% 7 Four weeks
16.7% 3 Six weeks
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Kufa Med. Journal 2009. VOL.12 No.1 ___________________________
A
B
Figure 1: Alopecia areata before (A) and four weeks (B) after treatment.
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Kufa Med. Journal 2009. VOL.12 No.1 ___________________________
A
B
Figure 2: Alopecia areata before (A) and six weeks (B) after treatment.
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Kufa Med. Journal 2009. VOL.12 No.1 ___________________________
DISCUSSION: In this study, hair growth was observed in all patients, no significant complications
were observed. Unfortunately, only a few studies have been done about the effectiveness of garlic
components in managing alopecia areata. Garlic is used all over the world for different
diseases. In Traditional Iranian Medicine (TIM), garlic was prescribed as a remedy for
different diseases such as infections, cancers, injuries, gastrointestinal dysfunctions and
cardiovascular diseases. Some therapeutic mechanisms of garlic are not clear. The hair
growth stimulating mechanisms of garlic are unknown yet. Different researchers have shown that alopecia areata is marked by autoimmune
assault on the hair follicle resulting in hair loss [17],[18] .The modulatory effects of garlic
on immune responses [19],[20],[21],[22],[23] .may justify its efficacy in alopecia areata. In a
comparative study by Sharquie et al ., crude onion juice applied topically in treatment of
patchy alopecia areata was compared with tap water; it was found that it can be
effective in treatment of alopecia areata [16]. Onion and garlic belong to a widely grown
vegetable family named Asparagus. Both of them contain diallyl disulfide, which may
provide their therapeutic effects [23] .Though different modalities of treatment, local and
systemic, have been used to induce hair re-growth; all of them have their own
complications and efficacies. The high spontaneous remission rate of alopecia areata,
sometimes makes it difficult to clearly assess the true efficacy of a given therapy [3].
CONCLUSION:
Garlic extract proved to be an effective topical treatment modality for early alopecia
areata.
REFRENCES:
1-Epstein E. Evidence-based treatment of alopecia areata. J Am Acad Dermatol 2001;
45:640-2.
2-Sharma VK, Dawn G, Kumar B. Profile of alopecia areata in northern India. Int J
Dermatol 1996; 35:22-7.
3-Firooz A, Firoozabadi MR, Ghazisaidi B, Dowlati Y. Concepts of patients with
alopecia areata about their disease. BMC Dermatol 2005; 5:1-5.
4-Safavi KH, Muller SA, Suman VJ, Moshell AN, Melton LJ 3rd. Incidence of alopecia
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why? Dermatol Clin 1996; 14:739-44.
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11-Sharquie KE, Al-Obaidi HK. Onion juice (Allium cepa L.), a new topical treatment
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13-Lee TY, Lam TH. Contact dermatitis due to topical treatment with garlic in Hong
Kong. Contact Dermat 1991; 24:193-6.
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Infect 1999; 1:125-9.
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Pharm Biomed Anal 2005; 37:963-70.
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squaric acid dibutylester. Int J Dermatol 1996; 35:52-6.
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contact dermatitis to garlic ( Allium sativum L.). Identification of the allergens: the role
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(guinea-pig). Arch Dermatol Res 1983; 275:229-34.
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lymphocyte functions. Mol Biother 1991; 3:103-7.
20-Morioka N, Sze LL, Moron DL, Irie RF. A protein fraction from aged garlic extract
enhances cytotoxicity and proliferation of human lymphocytes mediated by interleukin-
2 and concanavalin A. Cancer Immunol Immunother 1993; 37:316-22.
21-Jeong HG, Lee YW. Protective effects of diallyl sulfide on nitrosodimethylamine-
Induced immunosuppression in mice. Cancer Lett 1998;134:73-9.
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asparagus. An Sist Sanit Navar 2003;26:17-23
... These results are promising as they signal increasing investigation into the use of natural and botanical products for the treatment of alopecia. Maluki [51] et al., (2009) were reported that alopecia areata is a non-scarring localized hair fall, probably of autoimmune etiology, that responds to treatment with many topically applied irritant substances. Garlic had been known for a long time by its unique chemical composition that has many pharmacological implications. ...
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... Maluki [51] et al., (2009) were reported that alopecia areata is a non-scarring localized hair fall, probably of autoimmune etiology, that responds to treatment with many topically applied irritant substances. Garlic had been known for a long time by its unique chemical composition that has many pharmacological implications. ...
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Introduction Treating hair loss of Alopecia areata is a quite challenge. The treatment not only needs to be effective but must meet specific requirements in terms of accurate dose, sustain release, comfortable application with aesthetic appearance. Thus, the study was designed to develop sustained release topical patches releasing allicin using different sources, including the extract from fresh and aged garlic, and commercially pure one. Methods Patches were formulated by solvent casting method using ethylene-vinyl acetate as backing layer and Carbopol® 971P NF (CP) as mucoadhesive polymer. Physicochemical properties were evaluated including weight, thickness, drug content, surface pH, moisture content, folding endurance, and swelling. In addition to in vitro diffusion study across the cellulose and Strat-M® membranes. Results Patches showed good physicochemical properties. No significant difference (p > 0.05) was obvious in the percentage of allicin diffused across cellulose membrane between patch A (loaded with commercial allicin), patch B1 (loaded with fresh garlic extract), and patch C (loaded with aged garlic extract). However, ethanol enhanced the diffusion of allicin. The percentage of allicin diffused across cellulose membrane over 20 h from patch E (45 mg CP, 2 mL fresh garlic extract—equivalent to 60 mg allicin—and 1 mL of ethanol) was 79.94%. The flux and permeability coefficients were 2.62 mg/cm²/h and 0.52 cm/h, respectively, with an enhancement ratio of 2.60 times the reference patch M (mashed garlic). Conclusion Promising development of topical patches of allicin using garlic extract as natural source with lower cost than the commercial pure allicin and higher aesthetic acceptance than the used mashed garlic.
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At present the induction and elicitation of an ACD with potent contact allergens such as DCP appear to be the most effective, but still not definitively curative, approach in treating extensive forms of AA. Experimental data suggest that cytokines and growth factors such as IL 1 beta are involved in the pathogenesis of AA as well as the therapeutic effect mediated by contact sensitizers. It seems reasonable to assume that factors inherent in the late phase of ACD modulate a T-cell mediated mechanism responsible for AA, thus inducing hair regrowth. Such counteracting activities are most likely mediated by proinflammatory cytokines such as TNF-alpha, IL-10, or TGF-beta 1. This hypothesis may oversimplify the underlying immunologic mechanisms, but the effectiveness of topical immunotherapy in AA would be compatible with this concept. This mode of treatment is, however, a rather rough approach and recurrences are possible. It is hoped that advances in basic science will eventually allow us to find a more specific mode of treatment.
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Some individuals question whether any treatment is effective in severe alopecia areata. Certainly many patients, especially those with mild disease, experience spontaneous hair regrowth; however, results of double-blind studies clearly indicate that some treatments do promote hair regrowth even in those with extensive disease. Some patients never show either spontaneous or treatment-related hair regrowth; others experience hair regrowth only while maintained on treatment, repeatedly losing hair within a few weeks of discontinuing treatment and regrowing it within several weeks after restarting treatment. Some patients who have been responsive to treatment may experience exacerbation of their disease such that even high-dose systemic steroids do not prevent the development of alopecia universalis. Some treatments appear to work on some patients some or all of the time, but no treatment appears to work on all patients all of the time. We would suggest a few practical points that we find useful: To maximize the potential for cosmetic hair growth in alopecia areata that is extensive or flaring, treat the entire scalp instead of "chasing" patches. Do not change any topical treatment sooner than 3 months after starting it; early regrowth may first be present at 3 months. Cosmetic regrowth may take a year or more to achieve. Maintenance treatment increases the likelihood of maintenance of cosmetic hair growth, but patches of hair loss may still come and go. Atopic patients who experience seasonal hair loss may benefit (ie, have less severe hair loss flares or respond more readily to topical therapy) by using an antihistamine or mast cell stabilizer prophylactically. Whether one looks at the therapeutic cup as half full or half empty, most patients urge us to continue to try to find safe, effective long-term treatments for this disease.
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Alopecia areata is a tissue-restricted autoimmune disease of the hair follicle, which results in hair loss and baldness. It is often psychologically devastating. The role of T lymphocytes in this disorder was investigated with cell transfer experiments. Scalp explants from patients were transplanted to severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice and injected with autologous T lymphocytes isolated from involved scalp. T lymphocytes which had been cultured with hair follicle homogenate along with antigen-presenting cells were capable of inducing the changes of alopecia areata, including hair loss and perifollicular infiltrates of T cells, along with HLA-DR and ICAM-1 expression of the follicular epithelium. Similar changes were not noted in grafts injected with scalp-derived T cells that had not been cultured with follicular homogenate. These data indicate that alopecia areata is mediated by T cells which recognize a follicular autoantigen.
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Today there are new classes of hair growth promotors with proven efficacy. This article reviews the current state of the art agents for treatment of two of the most common forms of hair loss encountered in clinical practice, androgenetic alopecia and alopecia areata. Current therapeutic strategies are based on recent advances in the understanding of disordered hair growth. Practical treatment protocols are presented.