New Study Suggests Plucking Hair Could Help Solve Hair Loss

Psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis

Across the United States, millions of men and women struggle with thinning hair and baldness. As a result, many of these people will seek help from the best dermatologist for hair loss in their area or search for creative haircuts and even hairpieces to help hide their scalp. However, a new study suggests that there may be a simple, somewhat painful solution to hair loss: plucking some of the remaining hair. Could you find yourself seeking this type of treatment at a dermatologist clinic in a few years time?

In a new paper published in the journal Cell, researchers say they were able to provoke fur regeneration in mice by plucking hairs, causing plucked hairs grew back and new hairs to sprout nearby. However, this treatment takes more than a pair of tweezers: the researchers say the growth only occurred when many hairs were pulled in an area slightly smaller than a pencil eraser. After testing out many different types of spacing, arrangement and shapes with these plucked regions, the team says they found that plucking 200 hairs with the right distribution can cause as many as 1,200 hairs to regenerate.

The paper hypothesizes that the hair growth is due to a process called “quorum sensing”, in which cells use chemicals to alert other cells to danger and request help. Beyond hair growth, quorum sensing is believed to be part of the regeneration process of tissue and other organs. To further examine this potential example of the process, the researchers used genetic and molecular analyses to study the hair regrowth. They found that the immune system responds to the plucking by sending macrophages, white blood cells that destroy pathogens, to the area affected, as well as cytokines that can trigger a number of different responses in cells. In response to the plucking, the macrophages secreted signaling molecules called tumor necrosis factor alpha, which prompts plucked and unplucked follicles to grow new hair.

However, this regenerative response seemed to rely on signaling behaviors. For example, when researchers plucked mouse hairs in a diffuse pattern over a diameter larger than six millimeters, no hairs regenerated. However, when a dense concentration was pulled from an area three to five milimeters across, the hairs grew back and new ones sprouted nearby. The researchers believes this means that the quorum sensing circuit is assessing the injury to the skin and deciding whether or not to regenerate.

Currently, the researchers believe that their work could help the best dermatologist for hair loss treat alopecia, an autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss. However, there’s no way to know how this treatment could affect people with other forms of hair loss without further study. If you are looking for a way to treat your thinning hair, put the tweezers down and make an appointment with the best dermatologist for hair loss in your area. With a variety of treatments available, your specialists will likely be able to find an effective treatments for your unique case of hair loss.

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