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  • Some very hairy mice are bringing us another step closer to un-LOCKing a way to regenerate

  • a full head of hair.

  • Did somebody say a pun?!

  • About 50% of men and 25% of women experience at least partial hair loss by the age of 50,

  • whether due to age, medical treatments, or disease.

  • Current options for those looking to reverse this loss include things like medications

  • that may slow hair loss and transplants from hair follicles elsewhere on the body.

  • But neither have the often desired effect of restoring a thick and full volume of hair.

  • Researchers have been optimizing techniques for culturinghair follicle germsin

  • a dish for years.

  • There are 2 key types of cells that help hair follicles develop before we're born -- epithelial

  • cells that help us create skin, and mesenchymal cells that help us create a variety of connective

  • tissues -- so researchers copied this strategy from the embryo into the lab and they got

  • hair follicles to grow!

  • Though, these techniques were never high yield enough to produce the amount of follicles

  • needed to restore a full head of hair -- to its previous luxurious glory -- until now

  • Recently, Japanese researchers made improvements to this protocol, and then designed a special,

  • oxygen-permeable mini-chip to scale up the farming of follicles, growing up to ~5000

  • at once.

  • Thechipisn't like a computer chip -- it's a tiny polymer structure with little

  • wells in it.

  • They grow the follicles, add a collagen and mesh layer for easy handling, and transplant

  • right to the head where hopefully, it takes hold and grows like normal hair.

  • They showed that transplanting these follicles onto immunodeficient mice led to lots of new

  • hairs being formed within just 18 days!

  • They could easily transfer cells from their chip to a collagen matrix for uniform transplant

  • with follicles nice and evenly spaced out, which would make for practical harvesting

  • when it comes time to transplant cells grown with these chips onto humans.

  • While these engineers made big progress in the scale-up and efficiency of growing hair

  • follicles on a chip, their tests WERE all done with immune-deficient mice.

  • But it's not always a great idea to suppress a human's immune system.

  • It leaves them vulnerable to infections.

  • So, each patient would need their own personal source of hair follicles

  • Fortunately, hair follicles contain stem cells capable of regenerating new hairs, among other

  • cells.

  • Meaning that perhaps in the future instead of transplanting follicles from another part

  • of the body, scientists can take a few follicles from a patient, expand them in culture, then

  • transplant way more back onto your bald spot!

  • So, for those waiting eagerly for solutions, they're coming!

  • Keep putting sunscreen on the back of your head.

  • We have the machinery, scientists just need a little more time to figure out the cells

  • that'll grow in them.

  • Before you go, everyone.

  • This is SAM!

  • Sam is going to be on the channel more often from now on, she's amazing she studies neurobiology and I predict

  • -- like hair -- she's going to grow on you!

  • That is an excellent/horrible pun.

  • Hi everyone!

  • I'm super excited, I will need to up my pun game for sure.

  • Your puns are great.

  • You can also find sam on instagram

  • Yep!

  • I'm @Science.Sam and I talk about my work in Neuroscience and other science

  • communication topics all the time.

  • Thanks for watching! Did you know that we shared our DNA with neanderthals?

  • And they shared it with us too, if you know what we mean. Watch this video to learn more?

  • Did you know theres a special word for something that produces hair?

  • It's called trichogenic, and insects and other arthropods have these cells too.

  • Thanks again for watching Seeker!

Some very hairy mice are bringing us another step closer to un-LOCKing a way to regenerate

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B2 US hair transplant chip pun grow hair loss

We’re Using Stem Cells to Reverse Baldness and It’s Actually Working

  • 8 1
    joey joey posted on 2021/05/09
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