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Study Finds Plucking Hair Out Can Stimulate Growth

A recent study shows plucked follicles cause the immune system to respond with increased regrowth. Bald men will certainly be pleased that scientist have found a way of making hair regrow.

U.S. researchers have shown that when 200 hairs are plucked, up to six times as many can grow back. For the technique to work, all hair must be plucked from one small patch. Theory suggests that plucking from a small area signals the immune system that hair is being forcibly removed thus making the extra hair regrow, according to Daily Mail.

While the concept may seem painful and unconventional, the University of Southern California researchers say it will lead to new methods and potential new treatment for baldness.

Although the work is at an early stage and it has been tested on mice only, the testing on humans is still to follow.

[quote text_size=”small” author=”– Dr. Philip Murray” author_title=”Lecturer at University of Dundee”]

It would be a bit of a leap of faith to expect this to work in bald men without doing more experiments.


The study found that when follicles are removed in a specific configuration it will cause a signal to immune system that will make even more hair grow back. Plucking our 200 hairs triggered the growth of up to 1,200 replacement hairs in the mice, the study found according to The Guardian.

A potential drawback in balding men is that their hairs are already sporadically placed for this approach to be effective.

[quote text_size=”small” author=”– Dr. Cheng-Ming Chuong” author_title=”Professor of pathology at the University of Southern California and lead author”]

It is a good example of how basic research can lead to a work with potential translational value.


In an unrelated story we covered a couple of days ago French legislature voted in favor of a bill which criminalizes the use of models with a BMI below 18, effectively banning anorexic models. Hair loss is one of many negative side effects of anorexia. For more on this story click here.

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