Laboratory tests on a chemical compound called astressin-B has shown ‘astounding’ results for hair regrowth, with the effects lasting up to four months after just one jab a day for five days.
The research, published in the web-based publication PloS One, revealed that the discovery was unearthed “entirely by accident.”
Researchers from University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) were studying mice with gut problems that were genetically altered to overproduce the stress hormone corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF). The chemical compound astressin-B – thought to obstruct CRF – was then injected into the balding mice.
“Our findings show that a short-duration treatment with this compound causes an astounding long-term hair regrowth in chronically stressed mutant mice,” said Dr Million Mulugeta of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
“This molecule also keeps the hair colour (and) prevents the hair from turning grey,” he told the AFP news agency.
”This could open new avenues to treat hair loss in humans,” Dr Mulugeta added.
Afterwards, the researchers treated the mice with minoxidil alone. The study reported that this procedure “resulted in mild hair growth, as it does in humans. This suggests that astressin-B could also translate for use in human hair growth.”
Minoxidil – one of only two current treatments medically proven for hair loss prevention, was similarly discovered by accident. It was observed that people using minoxidil as a treatment for high blood pressure were growing unusual amounts of excess hair.
“it is difficult to tell whether this treatment would work for humans”, said Leonora Doclis of The Belgravia Centre, “but if it had a similar effect on genetic hair loss then the future could be very promising for hair loss sufferers. The current treatments are very effective but to be able to completely reverse total baldness would be revolutionary”.
The potential use of astressin-B in human hair loss cases was boosted by the research team’s assertion that no sign of toxicity appeared after extensive tests on the mice. However, human hair loss treatments with astressin-B – if they even come about– may take around five to 10 years to transpire and whether the treatment will be equally as effective for humans, whilst ensuring safety, is still unknown.
The next 10 years could prove to be revolutionary for hair loss sufferers, with the possibility of a number of new treatments on the horizon, including treatment related to stem cells and the new discovery of astressin-B. In the mean-time, there are two clinically proven treatments that are highly effective in preventing hair loss and regrowing hair for those with moderate to severe thinning hair. View before/after hair growth photos and feedback from people using specially tailored combinations of these treatments, with added hair growth boosters.