2011 discovery on hair stem cells


In 2011, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania (USA) made an essential discovery about hair stem cells.

When all goes well, these cells convert into keratinocytes, the cells that make up hair. On the other hand, when a man suffers from a hair loss of androgenetic origin, the stem cells in his hair follicles find it increasingly difficult to produce keratinocytes, and the process of male pattern baldness begins. Eventually, they stop producing keratinocytes altogether.

However, the stem cells do not disappear from the hair follicle, contrary to what was previously thought. The discovery is that they are simply rendered inactive, "quiescent" in scientific jargon. The researchers themselves were surprised to find the same number of these cells in the hair follicles of 27 men suffering from baldness and in those of 27 other subjects who did not lose their hair.

Hence the following hypothesis: since their stem cells still exist, it should be possible to reactivate keratinocytes and restart hair cycles once the process that put them to sleep has been fully decoded. This new discovery could lead, in a few years' time, to a radical treatment for hair loss.

FIND OUT MORE (in English)

Pubmed 2011: Bald scalp in men with androgenetic alopecia retains hair follicle stem cells but lacks CD200-rich and CD34-positive hair follicle progenitor cells

The Journal of Clinical Investigation : Full Text


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Jean-François Cabos

Jean-François Cabos is the creator of a unique hair care method based on the research he coordinated, which led to the publication of the book "Cheveux, Racines de Vie" with Hélène Clauderer by Robert Laffont (Collection "Réponses/ Santé").

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