A Hair Raising solution

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Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) have devised a hair restoration method that can generate new human hair growth, rather than simply redistribute hair from one part of the scalp to another.

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According to a study published in the online edition of the proceedings of the national academy of sciences, the approach could significantly expand the use of hair transplantation to women with hair loss, who tend to have insufficient donor hair, as well as to men in early stages of baldness.

“About 90 percent of women with hair loss are not strong candidates for hair transplantation surgery because of insufficient donor hair,” said co-study leader Angela M Christiano, PhD.

“This method offers the possibility of inducing large numbers of hair follicles or rejuvenating existing hair follicles, starting with cells grown from just a few hundred donor hair.

It could make hair transplantation available to individuals with a limited number of follicles, including those with female pattern hair loss, scarring alopecia, and hair loss due to burns.”

The source of new hair: For the first time, researchers have been able to take human dermal papilla cells (those inside the base of human hair follicles) and use them to create new hairs.