PATENTED METHOD FOR HAIR MULTIPLICATION IN VIVO
Hair reproduction and multiplication is the basis of the method used with the Hair Stemcell Transplantation or HST, practiced at Hair Science Clinics like the one recently opened in Lausanne. This method was the subject of a worldwide patent in 2005. The hair is removed from the donor area in the anagen phase, ensuring that the stem cells of the hair that are responsible for their growth remain attached to the hair removed. With the use of a patented compound, this hair comes into contact with components of the extracellular matrix or their substitutes and is then implanted in the scalp of the reception area.
Description of the patent for hair multiplication by transplantation
The essential structures for hair growth are the so-called hair follicles present in the skin. These hair follicles produce cells called keratinocytes. During progressive growth to the surface of the skin, the cytoplasm of these cells is transformed by many complex processes forming a hard and elastic material known as hair. As we know, the hair growth cycle is divided into three phases: the anagen phase (“growth phase”), the catagen phase (“transition phase”), and the telogen phase (“fall phase”). The hair follicle is always the same during the cyclic phase of hair formation and growth. The hair follicle has a growth core, from which can be produced new hairs after the removal of old hair.
Using the patented HST method in baldness
Baldness is often an undesirable phenomenon from an aesthetic point of view. Baldness, however, is a widespread phenomenon that concerns men as they age. Baldness is also present in women and is particularly undesirable from an aesthetic point of view. To fight baldness the most common solution is hair transplant. The technique FUT, also called strip, and FUE remove whole follicular units from the donor area at the back of the head. These UFs that contain one to four hairs are transplanted to the receiving area. These epidermal tissue particles are then implanted in the bald (receiving) area. A disadvantage of these techniques is that this procedure is penalizing the donor area. In fact, the hair is removed from the donor area and transplanted somewhere else. This hair does not grow back where it is extracted. The donor area remains partially emptied. This transplant technique, therefore, offers limited possibilities and the real limit is given by the amount of hair extractable in the donor area.
Hair multiplication in vitro or in vivo through the entire hair bulb
It is well known that hair follicle stem cells can be grown once removed from human hair by surgical extraction. We also know that it is difficult to form a fully developed epidermis with the help of these cells in culture, in vitro, and in vivo. Hair follicle cells collected from mice and cultured cause hair growth when implanted in guinea pigs. The method of hair reproduction in humans is described in the European patent application 0 236 014, in which the epidermal follicle cells according to the type of hair desired are removed from the existing hair on a patient’s head. The cells of the epidermal follicle are then grown in a medium containing growth factors. An incision is then made in the patient’s scalp epidermis and cultured epidermal follicle cells are introduced through this opening into the dermis. The disadvantage of this method is that it consists of an invasive method and that the cells are not positioned in a targeted way, so many cells are needed, and the likelihood of hair regeneration is lower.
The specificity of the patented Hair Stem Cell Transplantation, or longitudinal partial transplantation
Another method of hair reproduction is described in European patent application 0 971 679. In this case, the hair is removed from the donor area, allowing new hair to grow back from where it was removed. At the same time, new hair follicle cells are grown from the removed hair that carries these stem cells. These cells, properly used, form new hair. It is therefore possible to obtain a hair regrowth without this being done at the expense of the donor area, as is the case in all traditional transplantation techniques. Follicular stem cells collected in the anagen phase are immersed in a cell culture medium without serum.
The purpose of this invention is to overcome one or more of the afore-mentioned problems, and thus to provide a method for the reproduction of human hair in which it is not necessary a long growing time. The extracellular matrix is produced from existing stem cells around the hair follicle. This research highlights that the extracellular matrix is essential for hair growth. In this invention, stem cells are no longer grown in a keratinocyte culture medium but are simply immersed for a short time in an extracellular matrix pharmaceutical formulation. The hair is then implanted in the receiving area. With this technique, several hairs can grow after the reconstruction of a follicular unit.
Patent of HST or PL FUT technical hair reproduction method
The method follows the following steps:
a) Portions of the anagenic follicular unit are removed from donor areas so that growth-causing stem cells remain attached to the extracted portions.
b) The extracted portions of the follicular unit are brought into contact with a pharmaceutical compound containing extracellular matrix or its substitutes.
c) Portions of follicular units are implanted after phase b into the scalp of the receiving area.
Hair stem cells multiply from the same hair bulb
It is therefore not necessary to cultivate stem cells from a follicular unit; simply soak the extracted portions containing hair stem cells in the pharmaceutical formulation containing the components of the extracellular matrix.
Portions of follicular units are then placed in the scalp in the receiving area. As a result, one follicular unit creates others (in vivo cloning).
Only hair that is in the growth phase (anagen) is adapted to the method described in the patent, not those in the rest phase (catagen) nor in the fall phase and replacement (telogen). The hair in the anagen phase is characterized by a characteristic follicular unit shape on the lower part of the hair that is immediately recognizable by an expert eye. The removal of hair in the anagen phase can be done in several ways, provided that the follicular unit is still attached to the removed hair. The difference between the hair in the different phases is clearly visible when the hair is removed. In step b) of the patented method, the hair removed is brought into contact with a medium that contains extracellular matrix components. Thus, the hair collected can be immersed for a short time, in a pharmaceutical component containing an extracellular matrix. A longer contact time is not required. The culture phase (long-lasting in the pharmaceutical component) is therefore not necessary.
The term “components of the extracellular matrix” is a term known to scientists. The components of the extracellular matrix are for example collagen, laminin, etc. which are already available for cell culture. Soaking the part of the hair to which the stem cells are attached is sufficient for hair reproduction according to this invention. In the last passage c) the hair of phase b) is implanted in the scalp.
The Patented Medium
The part of the hair to which the stem cells are attached that has been in contact with a medium containing component of the extracellular matrix is thus revitalized. Therefore, the implantation of the individual hair of phase b) determines the growth of one or more hair. The pharmaceutical component preferably has a viscous consistency (for example a hydrogel). This component contains growth factors and trace elements. Hair in the anagen phase must be extracted from the donor area, after being selected.