Culprit found in rare type of baldness
One of the current handicaps of cancer treatments is the difficulty of aiming these treatments at destroying malignant cells without killing healthy cells in the process. But a new study by McMaster University researchers has provided insight into how scientists might develop therapies and drugs that more carefully target cancer, while sparing normal healthy cells
Full Post: Scientists now able to differentiate between normal stem cells and cancer stem cells in humans
Scientists in Beijing say they have discovered a genetic cause for a certain type of premature baldness and they suggest their discovery offers hope in future that those who inherit this rare type of baldness will eventually be able to keep their hair.
A team from Peking Union Medical College led by Xue Zhang have uncovered a DNA mechanism which results in Maria Unna hereditary hypotrichosis (MUHH), a baldness that strikes before adulthood.
MUHH is a rare inherited condition characterized by hair loss that starts during childhood and it affects both men and women - children born with the condition have very little or no hair at birth and have wiry or coarse hair in childhood which they progressively lose at puberty.
Victims often have no eyebrows or eyelashes, very little armpit and pubic hair and poor nails and women often have normal thickness hair which does not grow very long and loss of hair on other parts of the body.
The culprit in MUHH are flaws in the gene U2HR located on Chromosome 8, which acts as a key switch in the process as it controls a small peptide that in turn affects a protein called the human hairless monolog, or HR, which is crucial for the regeneration of hair follicles.
The discovery was made by trawling through the genome of 19 Chinese families with a history of MUHH, which is how the team found that mutations of U2HR led to increased levels of HR.
The researchers say the death of the hair follicles increases the likelihood of this kind of baldness and they suggest their research may offer the potential for a new drug to block this pathway and treat baldness.
The Chinese team say that fine-tuning HR protein levels is important in control of hair growth, and they have found a potential mechanism for preventing hair loss or promoting hair removal.
The study is published online in the journal Nature Genetics.
Every day we all lose thousands and thousands of scalp hairs – men and women. New follicles grow in their place all the time so we don’t notice this hair loss, unless you are going bald. If this is the case, you are probably a man in the 25-40 year age group. Baldness affects men more
Full Post: Propecia is one such drug that has proved to be very successful in treating male baldness
A study from a team of researchers led by Dr. Andrew P. Makrigiannis, Director of the Molecular Immunology Research Unit at the IRCM, has identified a new mechanism regulating interferon production. This discovery, co-authored by scientists from the International Medical Center of Japan (Tokyo), the National Cancer Institute at Frederick (Maryland) and the McGill
Full Post: A new mechanism regulates type I interferon production in white blood cells
The global giant Unilever which specialises in home, personal care and foods products has promised women a new deodorant which will apparently slow down the growth of underarm hair. Unilever plans to launch the products in the UK next month which will be presented as both sprays and ‘roll-on’ deodorants under the names Sure
Full Post: New deodorant promises to slow down the growth of underarm hair
A new study shows that men are more likely to lose vision as a result of a particular cause of intracranial hypertension, or increased pressure in the brain, than women with the condition. The research is published in the October 15, 2008, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.
Full Post: Increased pressure in the brain leads to vision loss more often in men
The scientists describe their work in this week’s Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In the study, the team shows how the loss of the protein HMGB2, found in the surface layer of joint cartilage, leads to the progressive deterioration of the cartilage that is the hallmark of osteoarthritis. “We
Full Post: Discovery of cause of cartilage degeneration in osteoarthritis