One of the most exciting recent developments in the search to find new solutions for hair loss has been research investigating hair cloning. Properly known as follicle cloning or multiplication, it involves taking a sample of a person’s hair follicle cells, multiplying them in a lab and injecting them back into the patient’s scalp. The aim obviously is to generate natural hair regrowth without the need for invasive surgery. But can we realistically expect this treatment to become available in the forseeable future?Unfortunately the process is not yet possible but research is underway to perfect it. Current predictions suggest that it is unlikely to become available to the public for at least ten years.
The name of the process is a little misleading as it really refers to cell therapy rather than true cloning. Once perfected it would involve taking a small sample of tissue from the scalp and then creating a culture that would allow the follicle cells to multiply. The theory is that the few sample cells would multiply to become several hundred thousand that could then be injected back into the scalp to create several thousand new hairs.
The major obstacles that must be overcome include the following:
– There is no certainty that the replicated cells can develop into hairs.
– There is no guarantee that the new hairs will grow to the same thickness, color or direction as the existing hair coverage.
– There needs to be certainty that the cloned cells do not introduce serious health problems such as the growth of cancerous tumors.
Clearly hair cloning offers exciting possibilites for the treatment of hair loss in the future but for now, you’d best stick with the more limited treatments that at least are currently available.