Baldies, take heart! Science is coming to the rescue: Japanese scientists have bioengineered stem cells to enable nude mice to grow hair.
Takashi Tsuji, a regenerative-medicine specialist at Tokyo University of Science who led the study, says that the technique holds promise for treating male pattern baldness.
The team used a specialized nylon sheath to guide the hair through the skin layers, enabling it to erupt from the skin of the mice in 94% of all grafts. The hairs took between 2 and 5 weeks to emerge, and behaved as normal: they underwent normal growth cycles and established connections to the muscles and nerves underneath the skin. The hairs also lifted up from the skin in response to acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter known to cause hairs to stand on end.