MedicalDiagnostics | Therapeutics
Luna Prototype Stimulates Hair Growth
During studies of the immune system, scientists at Luna observed that hair re-grows more rapidly than expected in animals treated with Luna's nanomedicine candidate. That, in turn, led the Luna team to treat SKH-1 "hairless" mice. Hairless mice were first described in 1856 as a spontaneous mutation in the natural population. Like all mice, they are born without fur, and grow a "baby" coat. By day 14, the juvenile hair of the mice begins to fall out and they lose their coat over the next week.
Eight-week-old SKH1 mice were treated with Luna's nanomedicine candidate for 14 days. The control group (Fig. 1, on the left) was treated with a placebo, or inactive compound, while the other was treated with a nanosphere-based candidate. Clearly there is more hair in the animal treated with the nanomedicine prototype and the hair is both thicker and longer.
Slices of their skin were stained and examined in the microscope at low power (Fig. 2). These microscope pictures show the fatty deposits below the dermal layer, as well as the thin epidermis on the top of the skin. In the skin of the animal treated with placebo, a few small follicle buds are visible, but they rarely extend completely through the dermis. In the treated animal, the follicles extend to the subdermal fat layer of the skin and are more robust.
Higher magnification pictures (Fig. 1) show further evidence that the new follicles in the treated group are thicker, longer and more numerous than those in the skin of an animal that did not receive Luna's nanomedicine prototype.
At higher magnification, it is possible to see that mast cells are visible in the shaft of the follicle. Infiltration of immune system cells is a stage in development of normal hair follicles. At present, scientists at Luna are unaware of any other therapeutic that produces new hair follicles in these mice, such as tests revealed of Luna’s nanomedicine prototype.
The key to successful intervention in these pathogenic processes is positioning the radical-trapping zone on the face of the carbon nanosphere within the stressed cell exactly where the pathogenic radicals are formed. The nanomaterials being investigated at Luna have highly unusual behavior and Luna scientists believe they can be targeted to sites with nanoscale precision. Luna scientists are currently exploring different dosing regimens and formulations to optimize performance.