A study conducted in mice confirmed that stress hormones inhibit hair growth by regulating hair follicle stem cells. The results show how this mechanism can be reversed.
Science has confirmed what has been suspected: pressure Negative impact on us fur.Researchers from Harvard University (United States) in mouse How stress hormones inhibit hair growth by regulating stem cells Hair follicle.
Hair follicles are cavities on the skin where hair grows, and appear alternately between the growth phase and the resting phase.Previous studies conducted in rodents and humans have shown that stress affects the animal’s Hair growth, But until now, the exact relationship between the two is still unclear.
Now by Xu Yajie Shows how mice Corticosterone (The hormone released under stress is equivalent to Cortisol In humans) regulate the activity of hair follicles. result Published in this week’s magazine natural.
“Although stress is associated with many tissue changes (including some hair problems), it is not clear whether stress actually causes these harmful changes, and more importantly, the mechanisms leading to these changes are still poorly understood.” SINC Hsu explained.
“Last year, we found that stress depleted stem cells. melanin Through changes in the nervous system (stem cells that give our hair a unique color), this is the basis for the graying of hair caused by stress. “The expert added.
He continued: “In this new work, we have discovered a completely different mechanism through which stress can affect the stem cells of hair follicles, which is very important for regulating the regeneration of these hair follicles and the growth of hair.”
When corticosterone levels are high, hair follicles remain in a long resting period and will not regenerate. On the contrary, if this hormone is reduced, the stem cells of the hair follicles will be activated to produce new hair.
Hsu said: “Chronic stress inhibits the activation signals in the cells surrounding hair follicle stem cells through corticosteroid upregulation, which usually promotes hair growth.” “Although stress may be harmful to different skin stem cells, the mechanism that triggers tissue changes may be. There are so many things to learn.”
Far from its application in humans
The authors say that corticosterone can inhibit the activation of hair follicle stem cells by inhibiting the production of a protein called “protein.” Gas 6It has been shown that in the absence of corticosterone, they can promote the proliferation of these stem cells. Therefore, the restoration of GAS6 expression can overcome the inhibition caused by stress and is beneficial to the regeneration of hair growth.
He said: “These findings provide a basis for exploring the treatment of hair loss caused by chronic stress.” Rui Yi,researcher Northwest University (United States), in the accompanying article. However, Yi Yi insisted that several issues need to be resolved before the results can be transformed into humans.
Like any therapy, additional verification steps and rigorous testing will be required to assess safety and effectiveness.Our discovery is only the first step, and more work needs to be done before it can be applied to humans.
For example, corticosterone is the rodent equivalent of human cortisol, but it is not clear whether cortisol will produce the same effects as seen in this work in humans. In addition, the stages of hair growth are also different between mice and humans, which may affect the effect of reversing stress-induced suppression of hair follicle stem cells.
“Like any therapy, many other verification steps and rigorous testing must be carried out to Assess safety and efficacy. Hsu pointed out that our discovery is only the first step, and there is more work to be done before applying it to humans. He concluded: “However, these discoveries provide important molecular pathways that need to be further explored.”
Corticosterone inhibits GAS6 to control the quiescence of hair follicle stem cells. natural DOI 10.1038 / s41586-021-03417-2