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

Skin to order (with follicles)


#1

Developed in partnership with Dr. Marc Jeschke, the head of Sunnybrook Hospital’s Ross Tilley Burn Centre, the machine forms large, continuous layers of tissue that recreate natural skin. The printed product includes hair follicles, sweat glands and other essential complexities of human skin.


#2

Hmmm, maybe the missing link is our skin ?! we need to re-engineer from the skin up in order to grow new hair. Stem cells responsible for skin generation also responsible for hair.


#3

Thanks, mell - great find. Now, how long until the FDA bans this in the US?


#4

Not long. The drug companies need a few months to do the math on how much income they would lose from it.

I’d be curious to know how a person might get this onto their head when they aren’t already needing a patch. Maybe it would be good just to give HT surgeons a big sheet of fresh new donor follicles to use. Otherwise we would be looking at the same scarring issues as strip HTs but in the recipient area instead of the donor - yeesh.

It’s all useless to us unless we know it can grow healthy scalp follicles though. Cotsarelis can produce “proto-follicle structures” right now which are probably just vellus hairs at best.


#5

If the FDA doesn’t ban it does that mean that this could used to 3d print sheets of scalp donor tissue complete with scalp donor area sized follicles? And if they could do that does that mean we now have an unlimited donor supply? And could they just replicate big patches of donor area skin with donor area sized follicles, remove balding tissue, and attach 3d printed donor tissue complete with donor sized follicles to the area they excised the balding skin from?


#6

I guess ok if it is just for a small area but it sounds like having brain surgery if the doctor has to remove all the skin on my scalp and put on a new slap of skin on my head, seems very traumatic and creepy to me. Also, are they going to suture the new skin to my head? Just the thought of it makes me cringe.


#7

[quote][postedby]Originally Posted by chris[/postedby]
I guess ok if it is just for a small area but it sounds like having brain surgery if the doctor has to remove all the skin on my scalp and put on a new slap of skin on my head, seems very traumatic and creepy to me. Also, are they going to suture the new skin to my head? Just the thought of it makes me cringe.[/quote]

That’s my point. You wouldn’t want to swap half your scalp outright. More like use a chunk of printed skin as a source of donor hair for a HT surgeon.


#8

cal is absolutely right here… replacing your natural skin with lab skin can’t be a good idea… However extracting the follicles sounds reasonable


#9

I’m a bit skeptical about this. It sounds more aspirational, as in “we’re working on this project and we hope to someday be able to print skin with working hair follicles, sweat glands, etc.” than “we have this technology available right now”. It makes no sense to me because right now, the best hair scientists in the world are still struggling in their efforts to reconstruct hair follicles from cells.

This Canadian group hasn’t explained anything about how they do it. To me, they’d need to have scored some kind of fundamental breakthrough in understanding to do this, and I haven’t seen such a breakthrough announced anywhere.


#10

“Jeschke says he hopes that a trial with five to 10 human patients could be possible within two to three years. The first small step to commercialization was taken when the design (which recently received a Connaught Innovation grant from U of T) was patented through the university’s Innovations and Partnerships Office and MaRS Innovations.”

From this article in the Toronto Globe & Mail, January 20, 2013:


#11

I have never heard of Dr. Marc Jeschke but both University of Toronto and Sunnybrook Hospital have excellent reputation in Canada.


#12

I also doubt this stuff already exists in the form the article implies.

Even if it does (or will soon) exist like that, it doesn’t necessarily mean we will get any scalp follicles from it. Cotsarelis’s findings, not to mention lots of people’s attempts to fight MPB, would seem to indicate that vellus hairs are orders of magnitude easier to create than scalp terminals.


#13

[quote][postedby]Originally Posted by chris[/postedby]
I guess ok if it is just for a small area but it sounds like having brain surgery if the doctor has to remove all the skin on my scalp and put on a new slap of skin on my head, seems very traumatic and creepy to me. Also, are they going to suture the new skin to my head? Just the thought of it makes me cringe.

[postedby]Originally Posted by cal[/postedby]

That’s my point. You wouldn’t want to swap half your scalp outright. More like use a chunk of printed skin as a source of donor hair for a HT surgeon.[/quote]

Exactly, this could be a viable source of unlimited donor for hair transplant, you don’t have to do the whole scalp at once, think of hair transplants, you only transplant what you need, The only difference is that the grafts now come with skin tissue attached, for example a session can be 500 grafts for the receding hairline, but with skin attached to each of the donor follicle.


#14

good thing is that it is from a top notch reputable university-UofT. They discovered insulin here too.


#15

I feel that extracting the follicles from the skin would still be revolutionary

imagine the following:

  1. the amount of alopecia no longer an issue due to an unlimited supply
  2. go to HT doc and he extracts a small patch of which they will amplify
  3. go in for the procedure-no longer caring about donor with respect to harvesting and also any scarring in donoer(except for perhaps the small area in which was taken for applying)
  4. go in for the procedure perhaps 4 rounds of say 10K grafts over 2-3 years-all minimally invasive and voila- magic.
    5)use ultra fine hair (perhaps from leg/chest,etc) just for hairline softness.

this would be revolution and in my opinion an end to baldness.


#16

[quote][postedby]Originally Posted by ssstingray[/postedby]
I feel that extracting the follicles from the skin would still be revolutionary

imagine the following:

  1. the amount of alopecia no longer an issue due to an unlimited supply
  2. go to HT doc and he extracts a small patch of which they will amplify
  3. go in for the procedure-no longer caring about donor with respect to harvesting and also any scarring in donoer(except for perhaps the small area in which was taken for applying)
  4. go in for the procedure perhaps 4 rounds of say 10K grafts over 2-3 years-all minimally invasive and voila- magic.
    5)use ultra fine hair (perhaps from leg/chest,etc) just for hairline softness.

this would be revolution and in my opinion an end to baldness.[/quote]

Sounds good but still seems far far away and we are nowhere near, not even 5 years.


#17

A reliable medical technology like this could be worth billions. Plenty of $$s motivation to develop this. My guess is, 7-14 years away.

The contents of my posts are my opinions and not medical advice
Please feel free to call or email me with any questions. Ask for Chuc
k


#18

Hey hairman, how did your transplant with Maras turn out? Any pics? I saw your post on H T network.