PG Wodehouse once wrote about cure of gray hair, called Guillotine, but now scientists have found another way. Now they’ve recognized the cells that let our hair to grow, so long as further insight into the mechanisms that causes hair to turn gray and bald. Scientists say this could be used to make treatments for graying hair and balding in the near future. These new findings are published in the journal Genes & Development.
Thus, researchers explored stem cells deep in the hair follicles identified as hair progenitor cells, along with two proteins called KROX20 and stem cell factor (SCF). They’ve found that KROX20 “turned on" in skin cells that became the hair shaft; however hair progenitor cells then produced SCF, which is vital for hair pigmentation. Thus, if cells with both KROX20 and SCF are existing they move up from the follicle, interact with pigment-producing melanocyte cells, and grow into pigmented hairs.
Therefore, once the team “deleted” the KROX20-producing cells in mice, they didn’t grow any hair and became bald. Moreover, when they deleted the SCF gene in the hair progenitor cells in mice, their hair turned white. Thus, this new discovery was stumbled upon by coincidental, as KROX20 is naturally associated with nerve development. The scientists found the cells though studying a disorder called neurofibromatosis type 1, a rare genetic disease that causes tumors to grow on nerves.
Dr Lu Le, the lead researcher from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, said in a statement, that this project was begin in an effort to comprehend how certain kinds of tumors form, as it ended up learning why hair turns gray and discovering the identity of the cell that directly gives rise to hair. Hence, with this knowledge, we are confidence in the future to make a topical compound or to safely deliver the essential gene to hair follicles to precise these cosmetic problems and next step is to find out how both the KROX20 in cells and the SCF gene stop working correctly as people age, as well as their role in male pattern baldness. In the meantime, it’s time to start accept that gray streak or rocking the bald look.