Extracts from fermented Trapa japonica fruits can improve symptoms of alopecia

In this study, researchers from South Korea examined the effect of Bacillus/Trapa japonica fruit ferment filtrate extracts (TJFs) on human hair follicle dermal papilla (HDP) cells to determine if the activation of the Akt/ERK/GSK-3B signaling pathway improves HDP cell proliferation. Their findings were published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

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  • Despite modern medical treatments, the number of alopecia cases is increasing. This has made the development of new treatments to control hair loss and prevent balding a matter of urgency.
  • According to studies, treatments based on plant-derived compounds could potentially prevent hair loss.
  • HDP cells are specialized fibroblasts found in the hair bulb. They play an important role in controlling hair growth and are crucial in conditions such as androgenic alopecia.
  • To evaluate the effects of TJFs on HDP cells, the researchers analyzed their properties using WST-1, Lowry and cell migration assays as well as immunofluorescence staining.
  • They also determined the cell cycle stage, performed Western blot and an in ovo chick chorioallantoic membrane assay, and constructed an organotypic 3D cell culture model for immunohistochemical analysis.
  • The researchers reported that TJFs contain numerous peptides and five unknown fractions.
  • The TJFs stimulated HDP cell proliferation and migration via the Akt/ERK/GSK-3B signaling pathway. This was confirmed by treating HDP cells with an AKT inhibitor (LY294002), a GSK-3B inhibitor (BIO), and an ERK inhibitor (PD98059).
  • The TJFs also induced cell cycle progression, inhibited type I 5a-reductase, decreased apoptosis, and enhanced angiogenesis.
  • Additionally, proteins like insulin-like growth factor-1 and keratinocyte growth factor that stimulate hair growth, were detected in the 3D cell culture model.

Based on these results, the researchers concluded that TJFs can enhance HDP cell proliferation and can be used as treatment for alopecia.

Read the full study at this link.

Journal Reference:

Nam G-H, Jo KJ, Park YS, Kawk HW, Yoo J-G, Jang JD, Kang SM, Kim SY, Kim YM. BACILLUS/TRAPA JAPONICA FRUIT EXTRACT FERMENT FILTRATE ENHANCES HUMAN HAIR FOLLICLE DERMAL PAPILLA CELL PROLIFERATION VIA THE AKT/ERK/GSK-3? SIGNALING PATHWAY. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 14 May 2019;19(1). DOI: 10.1186/s12906-019-2514-8

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