Home | News | Find a Doctor | Ask a Question | Free

Roger_that, what do U think about 3d spheroids & microfollicles?


#1

Roger_that, you’ve been gone awhile so I’m not sure how up-to-date you are. In case you don’t already know Dr. Nigam is trying very advanced cellular strategies - 3d spheroids and microfollicles. What do you think about 3d spheroids and microfollicles? Is there any point in hoping? I don’t want to get my hopes up without a good reason so I’m curious what you, with your knowledge, think about these two techniques.

I actually do think that Dr. Nigam can learn to do these two techniques effectively. I think the larger issue is whether or not either of these two techniques are actually capable of producing the desired result. What do you think?


#2

From the available publication it seems that cell signaling and communication in 3d spherical growth is quite essential in order for the cells to be trichogenic.

I think 3d growth is definitely a step in the right direction, however, large scale cell growth in 3d-spherical droplets or such is going to be extremely labor intensive and impractical. I have some concerns that it will be quite difficult to transition thse small tests into large scale production required to generate thousands and thousands of hair follicles.

[quote][postedby]Originally Posted by jarjarbinx[/postedby]
Roger_that, you’ve been gone awhile so I’m not sure how up-to-date you are. In case you don’t already know Dr. Nigam is trying very advanced cellular strategies - 3d spheroids and microfollicles. What do you think about 3d spheroids and microfollicles? Is there any point in hoping? I don’t want to get my hopes up without a good reason so I’m curious what you, with your knowledge, think about these two techniques.

I actually do think that Dr. Nigam can learn to do these two techniques effectively. I think the larger issue is whether or not either of these two techniques are actually capable of producing the desired result. What do you think?[/quote]


#3

I think this is similar to what Dr. Lauster is doing. Dr. Lauster also demonstrated that he was creating spheroids of follicular cells, and “proto-follicles” or small aggregates of cells that looked like the beginnings of a follicle. I have seen the photo Dr. Nigam posted of a spherical aggregate created in his lab, and it’s very encouraging to see him pursuing this line of work.

I also want to say something else, which I will build on later. There’s been a lot of continuing excitement about Follica’s various “scalp wounding” claims and the concept that wounding the skin stimulates the proliferation of stem cells (and maybe progenitor cells as well – who knows?) in the tissue.

OK, fine. But if you consider that Dr. Nigam is culturing stem cells and progenitor cells in his lab (as he claims), and then injecting those cultured cells into the scalp, then he is bypassing the need to wound the scalp.

Scalp wounding is great, as a SUBSTITUTE for cultured stem cells or progenitor cells injected directly into the scalp.

Could it be that Dr. Cotsarelis and Follica are aggresively pursuing the “wounding” avenue only because culturing and injecting hair follicle stem cells and progenitor cells is prohibited in the US and all other Western countries?

How smart is it to rely on a relatively weak SUBSTITUTE when we can have the real thing?

If the point is to get stem cells or progenitor cells into the scalp, I would think that having them cultured in vitro, and then injected into my scalp is much better in many ways than having my scalp wounded and having some as-yet-unknown growth factor or agent applied.

One big drawback of wounding is that, while it might result in the creation of SOME de novo follicles, in conjunction with the addition of some growth factor like fgf9, it doesn’t do anything about stopping the balding process. Any new follicles that grow would still be subject to DHT, etc.

That means that if you get new follicles from wounding, even if you end up with a relatively thick head of hair (unlikely), you would still have to have your scalp wounded on a regular basis, and this procedure repeated, to preserve the hair you did grow. How practical and appealing is that?

Whereas with stem cell injections, new follicles that grow would also be subject to DHT, but it’s much easier just to inject more stem cells or progenitor cells on a regular basis, than to periodically have the scalp wounded.

The wounding approach just seems like a weak, “backdoor” solution being used only because culturing and injecting stem cells is legally prohibited in the US. It’s a way of getting around that.


#4

Androgen-sensitive Follica hair:

As for new follicles, I don’t plan on going through puberty a second time. Follicles that aren’t subjected to the androgen onslaught during puberty never go bald even if exposed to androgens later. That has been proven.

As for existing follicles, I’m not really all that worried about it either. MPB seems to be very much a process of snowballing damage. If science can somehow manage to reset the snowball back smaller/higher up again, then it won’t get rolling as fast & large again for a while.

Our androgen levels are only dropping with age. Restoring our hair to a hypothetical age (say, 20yo) should not leave it balding nearly as quickly as it actually was at 20yo.


#5

I’m not sure I totally agree with you there, cal. Where has this been proven?

It may have been demonstrated in female-to-male transsexuals, who never underwent that “onslaught” of androgens in puberty, but who then receive androgens later on as adults when they decide to change their sex. Maybe if MPB has a high concordance in their families, even if they receive androgen therapy, they still never lose their hair. That would prove what you said.

That’s about the only scenario I can think of that would prove your statement that “follicles that aren’t subjected to the androgen onslaught during puberty never go bald even if exposed to androgens later”. What other follicles (apart from a transsexual’s) could prove this statement?

Beard hair? No. Body hair? No. ALL follicles in the body are subjected to the same androgen onslaught – they just respond in different ways depending on the genetic coding specific to their location. Females? You’re proving the obvious there, but even they aren’t subject to a big onslaught of androgens at puberty, but CAN still suffer from dramatic hairloss.

Person-to-person HT hasn’t really been done, or tested in this way.

Eunuchs (castrated men) wouldn’t prove it because if they were castrated after puberty, their follicles would have been subjected to the “androgen onslaught”, so you’re not trying to prove or disprove the same premise. They don’t grow new follicles after puberty, so we’ll never know. If they were castrated before puberty, sure, it proves that lack of androgens leads to a low incidence of baldness, but we also know that from women. And they’re not “exposed to androgens later”, so it doesn’t fit your point. Your point is not about androgens versus lack of androgens (all normal males undergo an androgen onslaught at puberty and those who aren’t predisposed to MPB can’t prove your point); it’s about the TIMING of follicles’ androgen exposure.

Your premise hasn’t been tested with neogenesis yet, because follicular neogenesis is brand new and hasn’t been tested in the way you say.

So, I would say, what you say hasn’t really been proven UNLESS there are studies of female-to-male transsexuals. I don’t know how else we could prove what you say and apply that directly to neogenesis, something which is as yet unknown.

As for older men who definitely were subjected to an androgen onslaught in puberty, we know that MANY don’t lose hair in their youth, but can start losing their hair much later on. MPB can begin in the mid or late 30s, or the 40s, or even in the 50s for many men. Although ususally, the later the onset, the better is the prognosis. But we know that it can wait many years, even decades, after puberty, to begin.

Hell, mine didn’t start until I was about 25-26, progressing very slowly until I was about 30.


#6

I cannot recall the scenario. Perhaps F-to-M transsexuals. But I’m pretty sure it has been demonstrated that no puberty androgen onslaught = no MPB later, regardless of adult androgen levels.

(This is the part where the late Bryan Shelton used to show up and cite the study.)

Neongenesis:
You are correct that we don’t know about that yet. I am making some assumptions.

Age of balding:

MPB may take decades to “show up” but I personally am not convinced that it can go 100% undetected until middle age. The miniaturization starts long before the visible evidence. Most guys don’t even notice thinning until they have lost at least 1/3rd of their original density, if not half.

Check for miniaturization of the hair shafts with a magnifying glass and the MPB thinning would probably be visible pretty early. People point to examples of famous faces who had great hair until middle age as examples, but who was checking those guys for miniaturization back when their hair still looked great?