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Lab-grown hair offers early hope

Specific growth conditions could be key to treatment of receding hairlines

Under the right conditions, human hair cells, transplanted into mice, can lead to the growth of new human hairs.

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Scientists have successfully grown new human hairs on the backs of mice.

Previously, researchers had cultivated adult rodent hair cells in the lab and transplanted them into skin cells to generate new rodent hairs. But doing the same with human hair cells has been difficult. 

Now, a team led by Angela Christiano of Columbia University Medical Center in New York has found the right set of conditions to cultivate human hair cells that, when transplanted into mice, grow new human hairs.

The results, which appear October 21 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, could bring researchers a step closer to treating bald spots and receding hairlines in humans.

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