While the last decade has seen more new arrivals on the hair loss market than ever before, there is always room for more. News reaches us from the USA where a team at Colombia University have just published results that promise more than just a new hair loss treatment.
New Hair Loss Treatment
It has been a remarkable decade for hair loss research. There are teams working on every aspect of every stage of hair growth. All of them looking for the key that will suddenly unlock a new future. A future where treating hair loss is childs-play. A simple course of treatments that will magically transport anyone to their pre hair loss state, or even better. The potential for having the hair you always dreamed of goes hand in hand with that eureka moment. If they can crack the code for hair growth why wouldn’t we be able to have the hair we want?
Today, there is a major challenge facing all of those research teams. We can quickly and reliably take hair follicles from mice and rats, and then grown them successfully in a lab. When it comes to humans, however, there seems to a new problem. Cells taken from human follicles have proved difficult to cultivate in the lab. Without that ability, there is a need to recruit human volunteers for testing. The need to test on humans is self-evident given the problems comparing rodents to humans. They produce very different outcomes.
Hair Transplants for Women
There is another key area where the ability to grow hair outside the body would bring benefits. For women, the benefits of hair transplantation are limited. Women suffering from pattern hair loss will tend to lose hair across the top of the head, in a general thinning. This presents a problem for the surgeon, who is faced with a relatively large area to try to cover. This would require a huge number of grafts, with the associated surgery, not to mention scarring. Modern techniques have reduced scarring significantly but not eradicated the problem.
It means that women are faced, if they go through with surgery, a difficult future. If the thinning continues over time the aesthetic result will diminish. In addition, the site of all the scars will become ever more visible. That progressive thinning is more likely than not and will force many women to consider a transplant inappropriate. Add this to the limited hair loss medications available to women and it is easy to conclude a new hair loss treatment is always welcome.
Hair Loss Update From The States
A team at Colombia University has published the stunning results of some recent research. They had been working on the gnarly problem of encouraging hair to grow in a laboratory. They have been using a 3D printer to produce an incredibly thin matrix on which to plant cells taken from the base of the follicle. The matrix features tiny wells into which the cells sit, before being doused with growth factors.
Incredibly, the team has seen amazing results. Hair not just growing, but growing in a predictable direction and at a healthy rate.
Their success, published in the University site here, teases the possibility of an extraordinary future. One where transplant surgeons, with the need for grafts removed, can simply implant newly grown follicles. As many as required. It would mean, for the first time in the history of hair transplantation, a woman could opt for great coverage without risk to her future appearance.
Maybe more importantly though is the impact it might have on the wider hair loss research industry. With unlimited human follicles available with which to test new products and techniques, the future could be bright. At the very least, it would significantly reduce the cost and complexity of testing.
The Hair Ambulance
The importance of the Colombia team’s results should not be underestimated. This marks a significant step forward in our ability to provide a hair transplant that is attractive to a wider clientele. But the boost it will give to hundreds of smaller labs with access to cheap, living human hair, will be huge.
Increasingly, it seems likely that the ultimate solution to hair loss will be a combination therapy using a variety of approaches. So the more variety there is in terms of research the better. These results give cause for optimism for the future of that research and its ability to continue to grow.
The Hair Ambulance brings world-leading hair loss solutions to your door. Hair loss is no longer inevitable. Use the contact form here to either arrange a home visit or book a consultation at one of our private hair loss clinics. Early intervention is a necessity. Do not delay if you are concerned about your hair loss.