A black spot on fair skin without even a hair. For the moment, it’s a photo of a mouse, but it could become that of a man. Or rather, the head of a bald man, from which suddenly a tuft of hair appears. Miracle or illusion, the umpteenth? This is not the first time that experiments of this kind, on the ability to regenerate the cells from which the hair bulb and its appendages come, hold up.
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This time it was Antonio Regalado to be published on the Mit Technology Review website. He explains, in the article, how certain start-ups, taking advantage of the latest acquisitions of genetic engineering aimed at creating new cells capable of making hair grow back, are trying to put them into practice in their laboratories. Among the companies involved is dNovo which, through the photo of a guinea pig on the abdomen of which appears in the foreground a thick lock of human hair, testifies to the success of a stem cell transplant.
Fundamentally, Ernesto Lujanthe Stanford University biologist who founded the company says that components of hair follicles can be produced by genetically reprogramming ordinary cells, such as blood cells.
Regalado summarizes the starting human condition, assuming that we are born with all the hair follicles, but then we are exposed to different contingencies that will characterize their fate. And here is aging, cancer, testosterone, adverse genetics, even Covid-19, in short, all these factors capable of killing the stem cells from which they generate hair. Quando scompaiono dovremo dire addio anche ai capelli: “Lujan dice che la sua azienda può converte qualsiasi cellula in una stamnale dei capelli, modificandone dall’interno gli schemi dei geni attivi. Other”.
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But it’s hard to get lab-grown cells back into the body. Cellular reprogramming experiments as a method of therapeutic treatment, few but there have been. For example, in Japan where researchers have transplanted retinal cells into blind people.
After the Covid, one in three people lose their hair
But the dNovo isn’t just for resurrecting foliage; there’s also Stemson, thanks to a $22.5 million loan secured in part from pharmaceutical company AbbVie. Hamilton, the CEO of Stemson, and Lujan believe there is a big market. On the other hand, that about half of men fall into male pattern baldness over the years, some as young as 20, is a bitter reality.