Hair follicle elongation in organ culture of skin from newborn and adult mice

    Toshikazu Kamiya, Akio Shirai, Sagano Kawashima, Seiji Sato, Tatsuya Tamaoki
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    TLDR Insulin or IGF-I is needed for hair growth in newborn mice, while minoxidil helps adult mouse hair grow, suggesting a way to study human hair loss.
    In the 1998 study, researchers found that hair follicle elongation in skin sections from 6-day-old C3H mice was maintained with insulin or IGF-I, but not without these supplements, indicating the importance of these factors in follicle growth. Bromodeoxyuridine incorporation showed cell proliferation during this process. In contrast, skin sections from 4-week-old mice did not elongate in complete medium but did respond to minoxidil with concentration-dependent thickening and elongation, although minoxidil had no effect on newborn mouse skin. The study, which cultured skin sections for 3 days with minoxidil concentrations ranging from 0.01-0.5 mM, suggests that the adult mouse skin model could be useful for studying human androgenic alopecia, as it mimics the suppression and partial reversal of the anagen phase seen in this condition. Each experimental condition was tested on six sections from two groups of three skin sections. Further research is needed to explore the molecular mechanisms of minoxidil's effects on adult hair follicles.
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