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restoring melanocyte stem cells in gray hair

gray hair

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#1 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 08:36 AM

Sorry if this question doesn't fit to this particular sub-forum, I don't know anything about biology and I didn't know to which subject this question is belong.

 

From what I understood the melanocyte stem cells produce melanocytes which in turn produce melanin in the hair and the lack of melanocytes stem cells and melanocytes are at least the main cause of hair graying and are the cause of the failure of hair graying treatments like this one(link "There is a portion of of white old hairs that may not covert to pigmented hair due to complete loss of McSCs") and even in a new available hair product that reverse hair graying only if there is some melanocytes left in the hair follicle.

But how the melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells can be restored in the hair follicle?, There is an available or a research about theoretical way of reproducing new melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells inside the body/hair follicle itself?, Or mybe transplanting melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells from other parts of the body into the hair follicles?. or mybe even using Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to create new melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells like what was done in this research(link)?


Edited by petrichor, 20 August 2018 - 09:02 AM.


#2 bob1

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 08:51 AM

I've moved this to the student forum, as it is not properly a cell biology question related to a research question.

 

You are quite correct, the colour of hair derives from the melanocytes. I think (I don't work on stem cell therapies) that the major problem with trying to transplant stem cells is that they don't last very long for several reasons, of which rejection is one. They also loose viability and effectiveness due to the surrounding cell environments and this results in the stem cells failing to work.

 

In terms of hair, transplanting stem cells into hair follicles would be very time consuming and costly - think about how many hair follicles there are per square cm on your head, then think about how difficult it would be to inject the stem cells into each of those follicles (if you missed one, then there would still be a gray hair...). The injections would need to be in just the right place too, so that the melanocytes can donate colour pigments to the hair.

 

It also pays to consider that melanoma (a type of skin cancer) is a result of unchecked growth of pigmented cells in the skin - Current thought on cancer is that "cancer" stem cells are the problem here; the stem cells proliferate and spread resulting in the cancer. Injecting melanocytes might result in an increase in the risk of melanoma cancers.



#3 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 09:17 AM

I've moved this to the student forum, as it is not properly a cell biology question related to a research question.

 

You are quite correct, the colour of hair derives from the melanocytes. I think (I don't work on stem cell therapies) that the major problem with trying to transplant stem cells is that they don't last very long for several reasons, of which rejection is one. They also loose viability and effectiveness due to the surrounding cell environments and this results in the stem cells failing to work.

 

In terms of hair, transplanting stem cells into hair follicles would be very time consuming and costly - think about how many hair follicles there are per square cm on your head, then think about how difficult it would be to inject the stem cells into each of those follicles (if you missed one, then there would still be a gray hair...). The injections would need to be in just the right place too, so that the melanocytes can donate colour pigments to the hair.

 

It also pays to consider that melanoma (a type of skin cancer) is a result of unchecked growth of pigmented cells in the skin - Current thought on cancer is that "cancer" stem cells are the problem here; the stem cells proliferate and spread resulting in the cancer. Injecting melanocytes might result in an increase in the risk of melanoma cancers.

 

Well, there is hair transplantation and it seems that this treatment is facing the same problem with the amount of hairs and precision, so the treatment might be expensive but still available especially when the problem is some few gray hairs in the right places that makes them very visible and annoying despite being in small numbers. so it is possible to at least restore the melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells in some number of gray hairs?.  

BTW I also saw this research(link) that seems(I didn't really managed to really understood what this research is about) to talk about curing vitiligo through increasing melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells in the hair follicles and somehow "migrate". is this have something to do with my question?


Edited by petrichor, 20 August 2018 - 11:28 AM.


#4 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 11:33 AM

And about the cell stem rejection problem, it wouldn't get solved in the future? I see that Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells is already in experimental use on actual patients with heart problems https://www.nature.c...586-018-05278-8

 

I also found this research(link ) about making melanocytes from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells, the scientists behind this research also managed to induce skin pigmentation on a mouse using human iPS cell-derived melanocytes and also said that it can be used to treat "various forms of human pigmentation disorders".

 

So if iPS cell derived melanocytes/melanocyte stem cells will be used to treat pigmentation problems in the skin, could they also be used to treat hair graying and be practical at least in some cases?.


Edited by petrichor, 20 August 2018 - 12:34 PM.


#5 bob1

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 12:41 PM

It is quite possible that they could be used to treat pigmentation disorders, including graying hair. The current problems are not insurmountable, and will almost certainly get solved in the future.

 

Currently hair transplantation techniques seed the hair in a grid pattern at defined intervals, it doesn't get inserted into each follicle, which is what I suspect you would have to do to reverse graying of hair. Having said that, I'm no expert in this area (i'm a virologist), and am really just guessing.



#6 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 03:30 PM

It is quite possible that they could be used to treat pigmentation disorders, including graying hair. The current problems are not insurmountable, and will almost certainly get solved in the future.

 

Currently hair transplantation techniques seed the hair in a grid pattern at defined intervals, it doesn't get inserted into each follicle, which is what I suspect you would have to do to reverse graying of hair. Having said that, I'm no expert in this area (i'm a virologist), and am really just guessing.

 

ok, I have one more question:

There are existing ways of inserting new cells(melanocytes) into the hair follicle? like physically injecting them into the hair follicles?, or it is one of the problems scientists will have to solve?.

 

I saw this article about "Treatment of Gray Hair in Vitiligo Patients by Direct Melanocytes Transplant Using Needling Micrografting"(link) but didn't managed to understand how exactly they did the melanocytes transplant into the gray hair(which was repigmented after several months) or what are exactly the techniques they used like "Needling Micrografting Technique" or "Dermabrasion Technique". they actually transplanted melanocytes into the gray hair or it was just somehow related to the disease they have?.


Edited by petrichor, 20 August 2018 - 05:19 PM.


#7 bob1

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 05:20 PM

I really don't know, however I am pretty sure there will be people working on this, at least in animal models. Human trials would need FDA (or equivalent) approval and could take years to get approval before trials could begin.



#8 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 05:23 PM

I really don't know, however I am pretty sure there will be people working on this, at least in animal models. Human trials would need FDA (or equivalent) approval and could take years to get approval before trials could begin.

 

I just made an edit right before you answered, did you saw it?. 

sorry for asking so many questions



#9 bob1

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 05:34 PM

No problem on the questions - that's why we are here usually.

 

Micrografting is described in the text of the article, basically they take a bit of normal skin from a donor, and slice it into small pieces then inject those directly under the skin. Dermabrasion is removal of the upper layers of skin, which is a surgical procedure. They then applied graft skin.



#10 petrichor

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 05:46 PM

No problem on the questions - that's why we are here usually.

 

Micrografting is described in the text of the article, basically they take a bit of normal skin from a donor, and slice it into small pieces then inject those directly under the skin. Dermabrasion is removal of the upper layers of skin, which is a surgical procedure. They then applied graft skin.

 

but what about the gray hairs? how did they got repigmented? those small pieces of pigmented skin being injected under the skin gave melanocytes to the gray hairs?



#11 petrichor

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Posted 21 August 2018 - 08:45 AM

No problem on the questions - that's why we are here usually.

 

Micrografting is described in the text of the article, basically they take a bit of normal skin from a donor, and slice it into small pieces then inject those directly under the skin. Dermabrasion is removal of the upper layers of skin, which is a surgical procedure. They then applied graft skin.

 

I saw this article(link ) from the doctors who made the melanocytes transplantation and it was said that "In cases of gray hairs, the grafted melanocytes will move from regimented epidermis into the outer root sheath then move down to reach the hair matrix thus inducing pigmented hair", so basically melanocyte transplantation doesn't requite direct injection into the hair follicle itself can be just transplanted into the surrounding skin and move into the hair follicle?






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