London – The best band-aids may grow from the scalp, new research suggests. Some lifelong scars may be avoided.
A study from Imperial College London found that scars treated with hair follicle transplants began to act like undamaged skin, generating new cells, blood vessels, gene expression, and even collagen. recover itself.
“About 100 million people suffer scars annually in high-income countries alone, mainly as a result of surgery. Our work opens up new avenues for treating scars and may even change our approach to preventing scars,” said Chief Hair Transplant Surgeon at Meditechnia Clinic, Gran Canaria, Spain. Dr. Francisco Jiménez, Associate Research Professor at Fernando Pessoa Canarias University, said: statement.
How does hair follicle transplantation improve wound healing?
Scar tissue in the skin lacks hair, sweat glands, blood vessels, and nerves, all of which are necessary for proper regulation of body temperature and detection of pain and general sensations. Scarring can also interfere with your ability to exercise and cause stress and discomfort.
Undamaged skin, on the other hand, is constantly being rebuilt with the help of hair follicles. To investigate this, the team of researchers hypothesized that hair follicle transplantation would allow it and that scars could also rebuild themselves.
They conducted an experiment in 2017 with three volunteers to transplant hair follicles into mature scars on the scalp. They chose the most common type of scar called a normotrophic scar, which often forms after surgery. Using a microscope, they took 3-mm-thick scar biopsies just before transplantation and again 2, 4, and 6 months after transplantation. They found that scars lead to profound changes, adapting the characteristics of healthy skin at the genetic and structural level. More specifically, they found that scars differentially expressed 719 genes in comparison, promoting cell and blood vessel growth.
The work doesn’t stop here, especially since the team can’t be pinpointed how A transplant brings about such a change. Therefore, they look forward to uncovering the underlying mechanisms to begin developing effective interventions that promote skin repair without the need for grafts. can even be extended to test how their findings perform in cases of more serious scarring, such as heart attack, cirrhosis, and fatty liver.
“After scarring, the skin never truly recovers its pre-wound function, and all efforts to date to rebuild scars have yielded poor results. is laying the foundation for exciting new treatments that can rejuvenate even mature scars and restore healthy skin function.”
“This research has obvious applications in restoring people’s confidence, but our approach goes beyond cosmetics because scar tissue can cause problems in all organs,” she said. I will add.
Findings are published in the journal npj regenerative medicine.