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Scalp Microbiome In Male Pattern Baldness

baldness p.acnes inflammation hair microbiome sebum bacteria fungus malassezia

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#1 misterE

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Posted 07 October 2019 - 11:20 PM


A study from May 2019 looked at the type of bacteria in the skin of people with and without baldness. What they found was that men with baldness had much higher levels of P-acnes... the same type of bacteria that causes acne. P-acnes is known to live in the sebaceous-glands and feeds off the sebum produced by androgenic stimulation.

The authors of the study hypothesize that the immune-system is attacking the P-acnes by releasing inflammatory cytokines, which in turn inhibits the anagen-phase of hair-growth. Very interesting read and implications. 

https://journals.plo...al.pone.0216330

 

 


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#2 Rays

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 09:29 AM

Maybe the bacteria can be killed by zapping them with electricity, as they do here:

https://www.newscien...e-male-balding/

 

 


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#3 misterE

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 02:43 PM

Maybe the bacteria can be killed by zapping them with electricity, as they do here:

https://www.newscien...e-male-balding/

 

 

Interesting you mentioned that. They have red-light combs and hats, that shine red-light light onto the scalp. It spurs hair growth a bit and at the same time red-light UV it is known to kill bacteria. 



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#4 Rays

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 06:13 PM

... red-light combs and hats, that shine red-light light onto the scalp. It spurs hair growth a bit and at the same time red-light UV it is known to kill bacteria. 

 

I've read about the red light treatment, but I think if it would really help, we would have heard a lot more about it. Maybe it helps when used in combination with other therapies.

UV light kills bacteria, yes, but it is different from red light. It is at the other side of the spectrum.

I think it will be difficult to use UV as you will get skin burn.



#5 lukas_93

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 06:28 PM

Here is another article about the potential bacteria killing qualities:

 

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30919507

 

So 422 and 449 nm blue light seems to work on petri plate. 


Edited by lukas_93, 09 October 2019 - 06:29 PM.

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#6 Rays

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 09:40 AM

Interesting. High power blue LEDs at that wavelength are readily available. Would the light penetrate deep enough into the skin to kill the bacteria?

 

https://eu.mouser.co...eet-1539535.pdf

 



#7 Daniel Cooper

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 02:49 PM

Wouldn't a round of tetracycline like that sometimes used (at least in the past) to treat acme be potentially revealing? Or even perhaps a topical application of tetracycline.

 

The problem with this study is you don't know which is the cause and which is the effect.  It might be that p-acnes infection promotes hair loss.  On the other hand, it could just as well be that a bald scalp promotes p-acnes infection.

 

 

 

 

 


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#8 misterE

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 04:08 PM

Wouldn't a round of tetracycline like that sometimes used (at least in the past) to treat acme be potentially revealing? Or even perhaps a topical application of tetracycline.

 

The problem with this study is you don't know which is the cause and which is the effect.  It might be that p-acnes infection promotes hair loss.  On the other hand, it could just as well be that a bald scalp promotes p-acnes infection.

Fair enough, but there have been studies using ketoconazole and zinc shampoos (both of which kill p-acnes) showing regrowth. Other studies show that knocking out the immune-system or using topical anti-inflammatories (cetirizine) promote regrowth as well. So it's probably not the bacteria per-say, but rather the inflammation it attracts. 


Edited by misterE, 10 October 2019 - 04:09 PM.


#9 Daniel Cooper

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 05:57 PM

Fair enough, but there have been studies using ketoconazole and zinc shampoos (both of which kill p-acnes) showing regrowth. Other studies show that knocking out the immune-system or using topical anti-inflammatories (cetirizine) promote regrowth as well. So it's probably not the bacteria per-say, but rather the inflammation it attracts. 

 

True, but ketoconazole is an anti-fungal, not an antibiotic.  Maybe it has some antibiotic activity but that isn't documented that I know of.  I suspect various zinc compounds do have some antibiotic activity though.  

 

I guess my point was, since we don't know which is the cause and which is the effect, a reasonable next step would be to give a bunch of balding men a course of tetracycline which is known to be effective against dermal p-acnes infections and see what it does to their hair population.  There's really no reason to guess about this.  We know a number of ways to combat that bacteria.  Try one and see what it does.  There's no reason for speculative treatments like blue light or electricity.  We've known how to effectively kill p-acnes for a long time now.

 

Also, I'm someone skeptical due to the fact that over the decades millions of people have been put on long term courses of various antibiotics which should have been effective against p-acnes.  Surely some of these were balding men.  Unfortunately we don't have a lot of anecdotal stories about guys regrowing hair whilst on antibiotics.


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#10 Rocket

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Posted 11 October 2019 - 05:08 PM

Fair enough, but there have been studies using ketoconazole and zinc shampoos (both of which kill p-acnes) showing regrowth. Other studies show that knocking out the immune-system or using topical anti-inflammatories (cetirizine) promote regrowth as well. So it's probably not the bacteria per-say, but rather the inflammation it attracts. 

 

In my experiments with MPB, topical zinc + grape see extract produced great results. Problem was it was messy and consumed too much time. Zinc is a DHT blocker, whereas I believe that GSE acts as the growth factor.



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#11 misterE

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Posted 12 October 2019 - 05:13 AM

OK boys! Fresh off the press:
Daniel Cooper... this one's for you! 



Investigation on Microecology of Hair Root Fungi in Androgenetic Alopecia Patients.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/31240449

 

 


Edited by misterE, 12 October 2019 - 05:14 AM.

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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: baldness, p.acnes, inflammation, hair, microbiome, sebum, bacteria, fungus, malassezia

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