hairy mole
Sean Cate
Sean Cate
June 20, 2024 ·  3 min read

The Cure of Baldness May Have Been Discovered, Scientists Say  — and It’s Hiding In Your Hairy Moles

Baldness, scientifically referred to as androgenetic alopecia, is a condition that affects a significant portion of the population. Approximately 50% of men and women experience this condition, driving extensive research into potential cures. Surprisingly, recent studies suggest that the key to combating hair loss might be found in an unexpected place: hairy moles on our skin.

The Discovery of Osteopontin

Mole with hair on fair caucasian skin. Dermal mole Melanocytic nevus macro image with copy space and selective focus.
Source: Shutterstock

Researchers at the University of California, Irvine, have identified a molecule called osteopontin, which is abundant in hairy moles, as a potential game-changer for hair loss treatment. This molecule appears to activate dormant hair follicles, leading to the robust growth of long and thick hairs in moles. Professor Maksim Plikus, a developmental and cell biologist at UCI, emphasizes that nature has already conducted the most important experiment by demonstrating osteopontin’s effect in millions of people with hairy moles.1

Read More: Changes in Your Hair May Indicate a Thyroid Issue

Reverse-Engineering Nature’s Experiment

bald man
Credit: Pixabay

Plikus and his team are optimistic about the potential application of osteopontin in reversing hair loss. By reverse-engineering the natural process observed in hairy moles, they believe this molecule could stimulate hair growth on the scalp. The research has shown promising results in mouse experiments and human skin samples, leading to preparations for clinical trials in humans.

Clinical Trials and Potential Treatments for Hair Loss

Side view of handsome middle aged man getting hair treatment at beauty salon. Man having mesotherapy session at aesthetic clinic, therapist hands in gloves making injection in scalp, closeup
Source: Shuttersstock

The forthcoming clinical trials aim to test the efficacy of osteopontin-based treatments in humans. These treatments are expected to involve the injection of osteopontin and other hair-growing proteins into the scalp using microneedles, a technique similar to Botox treatments. Plikus, co-founder of a startup focusing on this research, expresses confidence in the potential of these trials to yield useful information and possibly revolutionize hair loss therapy.

The Mechanism of Osteopontin

Thinning hair and hair loss,female pattern baldness,Hair transplant
Source: Shuttersstock

Osteopontin plays a critical role in wound healing, tissue remodeling, and inhibition of bone mineralization. However, its involvement in hair growth has only recently been recognized. In the context of hairy moles, osteopontin interacts with a receptor molecule called CD44, found on nearby hair stem cells. This interaction activates the hair stem cells, prompting new hair growth.2

Addressing the Complexity of Hair Growth

beautiful long hair on man
Credit: Pixabay

Hair growth is a complex process, and despite common perceptions, stimulating hair growth is not straightforward. Current hair loss treatments like Rogaine (minoxidil) and Propecia (finasteride) are not effective for everyone and often come with side effects. The discovery of osteopontin’s role in hair growth offers a new avenue for developing more effective and less invasive treatments.3

Read More: [rewrite] 9 DHT Blocking Foods To Help Reverse Hair Loss

The Future of Hair Loss Treatment

Oil serum, hair care or black woman with afro in studio on brown background for a healthy scalp. Smile, pipette or natural African girl at hairdresser salon for hairstyle treatment or beauty makeover
Source: Shutterstock

The potential of osteopontin to treat baldness represents a significant breakthrough in hair loss research. If successful, the osteopontin-based treatment could become a quick, near-painless procedure performed in dermatologists’ offices. This would provide a much-needed alternative to current treatments, which include costly and invasive hair transplantation surgeries.

From Hairy Moles to Hair Loss Cure: The Future Is Bright

mustached bald man
Credit: Pixabay

The discovery of osteopontin’s role in hair growth through the study of hairy moles opens up exciting possibilities for hair loss treatment. As researchers prepare for clinical trials, there is a growing optimism that this molecule could offer a revolutionary solution to androgenetic alopecia. More studies will confirm these findings, creating the potential for a new, effective hair loss therapy is on the horizon.

Read More: The Best Shampoos for Anyone Who Has Thinning Hair

Sources

  1. Cure for baldness might be hiding in your hairy moles, new study finds.” NY Post. Marc Lallanilla. June 22, 2023.
  2. Scientists believe they’ve discovered a cure for baldness. It’s hiding in your hairy moles — and can be injected like Botox..” Yahoo. Hilary Brueck. June 21, 2023.
  3. Scientists Investigate Solution to Hair Loss and it Can Be Injected Like Botox.” Healthline. Brian Mastroianni on July 11, 2023.