Medical research

Synthetic sandalwood found to prolong human hair growth

A team of researchers led by Ralf Paus of the University of Manchester has found that applying sandalwood to the scalp can prolong human hair growth. In their paper published in the journal Nature Communications, the group ...

Medical research

Hairy skin grown from mouse stem cells

Indiana University School of Medicine researchers have cultured the first lab-grown skin tissue complete with hair follicles. This skin model, developed using stem cells from mice, more closely resembles natural hair than ...

Genetics

Gene therapy restores hearing in deaf mice... down to a whisper

In the summer of 2015, a team at Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School reported restoring rudimentary hearing in genetically deaf mice using gene therapy. Now the Boston Children's research team reports restoring ...

Medical research

Gene therapy restores hearing in deaf mice

Using gene therapy, researchers at Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School have restored hearing in mice with a genetic form of deafness. Their work, published online July 8 by the journal Science Translational ...

Medical research

Some skin cancers may start in hair follicles

Some of the most deadly skin cancers may start in stem cells that lend color to hair, and originate in hair follicles rather than in skin layers, a new study finds.

Medical research

Lymphatic system found to play key role in hair regeneration

Given the amount of wear and tear it's subjected to on a daily basis, the skin has a phenomenal ability to replenish itself. Spread throughout it are small reservoirs of stem cells, nested within supportive microenvironments ...

Medical research

Biomarker for schizophrenia can be detected in human hair

Working with model mice, postmortem human brains, and people with schizophrenia, researchers at the RIKEN Center for Brain Science in Japan have discovered that a subtype of schizophrenia is related to abnormally high levels ...

Medical research

Outer hair cells regulate ear's sensitivity to sound

The ear's tiny outer hair cells adjust the sensitivity of neighbouring inner hair cells to sound levels rather than acting like an amplifier, suggests a new study published today in eLife.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Study: no link between 'extreme' personal grooming, STDs

Women who choose to shave or wax their pubic hair might not be raising their risk of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) after all, according to a new study that found no connection between "extreme" grooming and chlamydia ...

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Hair

Hair is a protein filament that grows through the epidermis from follicles deep within the dermis. The fine, soft hair found on many nonhuman mammals is typically called fur; wool is the characteristically curly hair found on sheep and goats. Found exclusively in mammals, hair is one of the defining characteristics of the mammalian class. Although other non-mammals, especially insects, show filamentous outgrowths, these are not considered "hair" in the scientific sense. So-called "hairs" (trichomes) are also found on plants. The projections on arthropods such as insects and spiders are actually insect bristles, composed of a polysaccharide called chitin. There are varieties of cats, dogs, and mice bred to have little or no visible fur. In some species, hair is absent at certain stages of life. The main component of hair fiber is keratin.

The hair can be divided into three parts length-wise, (1) the bulb, a swelling at the base which originates from the dermis, (2) the root, which is the hair lying beneath the skin surface, and (3) the shaft, which is the hair above the skin surface. In cross-section, there are also three parts, (1) the medulla, an area in the core which contains loose cells and airspaces (2) the cortex, which contains densely packed keratin and (3) the cuticle, which is a single layer of cells arranged like roof shingles.

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