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    CENTRAL CENTRIFUGAL CICATRICIAL ALOPECIA Scarring alopecia, in particular Centrifugal Cicatricial Alopecia, is of great interest to me because there are so many unknown factors as to how and why it is caused.  The Central Centrifugal Cicatricial Alopecia (CCCA) is said to affect African American women more than any other group of people.  With that said, I have tried to research this form of hair loss to find the commonalities in recent studies.
  • Neuropeptides lead to hair loss
    David Salinger is one of the world's leading trichologists - or hair and scalp specialists - and is director of the International Association of Trichologists.
  • Researchers discover baldness gene: 1 in 7 men at risk
    Scientists at McGill, King's College and GSK solve mystery of male pattern baldness

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An article about the International Association of Trichologists:

If you’re having a consultation at Jennifer Maynard Jaimungal’s clinic, chances are your hair is already too far gone for a hairdresser to do anything about it. From bald spots to hair loss and scalp problems, Mayard Jaimungal has seen it all. She is not a doctor but as a trichologist. She’s qualified to deal with problems of the hair and scalp before treating it or referring her patients to another professional (MD, dermatologist, nutritionist, psychologist) depending on the results of her consultancy. The recently installed president of the T&T Cosmetology Association, Maynard Jaimungal was involved in hair and beauty for years while working at a science lab of a school. She was intrigued by science and, already with passion for cosmetology—which she still did on a part time basis—she found herself wanting to know more about the scientific study of hair and its diseases “I wanted to know why certain things were happening to the hair and what can be done about it. I wanted to gain further knowledge and understanding of hair care and hair products so I began searching for answers. Trichology provided these answers.”

Seven years ago, after she completed the International Association of Trichology programme, Maynard Jaimungal opened her Hair and Scalp Clinic. Of her clients, women make up the most. The constant use of harsh chemicals, pulling hair too tight and braiding hair are among the hair sins women commit daily that often result in premature hair loss. Other causes are more scientific like genetic disposition of the patient, hormonal changes, an inactive or active thyroid, stress or the use of certain medication.
“I tell people that their hair gives the first sign that something is going wrong in the body. Hair is the best measure of your general health. “It is normal to lose about 50 to 100 hairs a day, however, hair is sensitive to any body imbalance due to its fast rate of growth. What causes hair loss in one person may not cause it in another person.”

Maynard Jaimungal also tells her patients that hair loss does not occur overnight and advises mothers to teach their daughters proper hair care when they are young rather than wait until they are adults.
“When the child is growing up is the best time to start and a mother should be working with the child's hairdresser to ensure that she is getting proper hair care. Transitioning from primary school to secondary school and even the onset of menstruation, for instance, are two life-changing situations that can contribute to poor hair health in a young girl because of the stress and hormonal changes associated with these conditions. “The earlier parents identify the problem, the sooner they can address them. Half of the problem is that when women start to notice their hair thinning or falling out it’s too late and by then, instead of seeking expert help to find out what is going on, they try to cover it up by doing different things to their hair.”

For children younger than 11, Maynard Jaimungal's pet peeve continues to be the tight cornrows that some mothers put in their daughter's hair. While it may be a convenient for a busy mother, since the style can be worn for a week before it looks untidy, the San Fernando born trichologist said corn rows do more damage to the hair than good. She is concerned, she said, about the number of little girls who are experiencing traction alopecia (damage to the hair follicles from pulling hair too tight). “A lot of mothers think that when they plait a child's hair for school they are doing something positive to ensure hair growth when they are actually not. “Once a child gets good nutrition and regular shampoos, he/she will have healthy growing hair.”  Mayard Jaimungal’s faithful clients who still go to her for cosmetology services at her salon, also benefit from her knowledge of trichology when they go to get their hair done. Maynard Jaimungal also does certification of students for national exams at the National Training Agency and often she is called upon as a consultant for her trichology expertise. “I am committed to improving the hair and scalp condition of my patients who are faced with several challenges in this area.”

More Info

Causes of temporary hair loss
Temporary hair loss can be caused by high fever, operations, dieting or change in diet, and the taking of some medications (such as those used for the treatment of cancer). In most cases the body adjusts to the drug and the hair recovers. Hair loss can also occur upon termination of pregnancy although not everyone who has a baby will lose hair. Temporary hair loss will either correct itself or will slow to normal once the underlining cause has been pinpointed or corrected.

Causes of permanent hair loss
Permanent, diffuse hair loss occurs until the causative problem is corrected.
The most common causes of permanent diffuse hair loss are:
• Deficiencies in minerals such as iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium and chromium;
• Too much copper in the diet, because as copper increases zinc decreases;
• Poor protein intake, essential fatty acid deficiency and malabsorption;
• Anaemia, a condition where there are too few red blood cells or less than the normal amount of haemoglobin in the blood stream.
• Hormonal imbalance as a result of the thyroid gland being overactive or underactive, diabetes or menopause.

Hair loss linked to stress hormones

US researchers looking at how stress affects the gut stumbled upon a potent chemical that caused mice to regrow hair by blocking a stress-related hormone, said a study today.

While the process has not yet been tested in humans, it grew more hair in mice than minoxidil, the ingredient in Rogaine, a popular treatment for baldness, said the study in the online journal PLoS One.

"This could open new venues to treat hair loss in humans through the modulation of the stress hormone receptors, particularly hair loss related to chronic stress and aging," said co-author Million Mulugeta.

Researchers from University of California at Los Angeles and the Veterans Administration discovered the chemical compound "entirely by accident", said the study.

Scientists were using genetically engineered mutant mice that were altered to produce too much of a stress hormone called corticotrophin-releasing factor, or CRF. The chronic stress condition makes them lose hair on their backs.

They injected a chemical compound called astressin-B, developed by the California-based Salk Institute, into the mice to see how the CRF-blocker would affect gastrointestinal function.

When they saw no effect at first, they continued for five days. The researchers completed their gastrointestinal tests and put the mice back in cages with their hairier counterparts.

When they returned to get the stressed-out mice three months later for more tests, they discovered they could no longer tell them apart because the mice had regrown all the hair they had lost.

"Our findings show that a short-duration treatment with this compound causes an astounding long-term hair regrowth in chronically stressed mutant mice," said Professor Mulugeta of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

Not only did it help grow hair, it also appeared to help hair maintain its color and not go grey.

"This molecule also keeps the hair color, prevents the hair from turning gray," he said.

The short five-day time span of treatments brought hair growth effects that lasted up to four months, which was also surprising to researchers.

"This is a comparatively long time, considering that mice's life span is less than two years," Professor Mulugeta said.

Researchers gave the bald mice treatments of "minoxidil alone, which resulted in mild hair growth, as it does in humans. This suggests that astressin-B could also translate for use in human hair growth," said the study.

Co-author Yvette Tache, a professor of medicine at UCLA, said it could take up to five years to start a clinical trial in humans.

"This research could be beneficial in a lot of diseases which are stress-related in their manifestations or exacerbation of symptoms," she said, noting that no sign of toxicity has appeared after extensive tests on mice.

Professor Mulugeta said talks were underway with a major cosmetics firm to fund a study in humans.

"In general, the concept that interfering with the stress hormones or their receptors to prevent or treat stress-related diseases is a very valid concept," he said.

Jean Rivier, a Swiss professor at the Salk Institute, said he has reason to believe the process could be useful in other stress-related ailments, from psoriasis to depression to heart and artery problems.

"You bring back the skin to a normal acidic state where it can essentially go back to a normal stage whereby hair will grow again, and this is very reminiscent of what is seen in relapses and remissions," he said.

The CRF-blocker was studied by other major pharmaceutical companies but was abandoned because it could not administered orally, he said.

However, the latest method uses peptide analogs that bind to the same receptors but via different types of molecules, which could be administered though injections or potentially through a nasal spray.

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