Article: Perifollicular fibrosis: pathogenetic role in androgenetic alopecia.
Source: Biol Pharm Bull. 2006 Jun;29(6):1246-50.
Author(s): Yoo HG, Kim JS, Lee SR, Pyo HK, Moon HI, Lee JH, Kwon OS, Chung JH, Kim KH, Eun HC, Cho KH
Department of Dermatology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Laboratory of Cutaneous Aging and Hair Research, Clinical Research Institute, Seoul National University Hospital, and Institute of Dermatological Science, Seoul National University.

Fibrosis is a scarring process in the skin that can damage the hair follicle (hair loss). This study shows that increased Testosterone speeds up fibrosis while treatment with Finasteride helps slow fibrosis. Stopping or slowing fibrosis may be another method by which Finasteride may help prevent hair loss.

Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) is a dihydrotestosterone (DHT)-mediated process, characterized by continuous miniaturization of androgen reactive hair follicles and accompanied by perifollicular fibrosis of follicular units in histological examination. Testosterone (T: 10(-9)-10(-7) M) treatment increased the expression of type I procollagen at mRNA and protein level. Pretreatment of finasteride (10(-8) M) inhibited the T-induced type I procollagen expression at mRNA (40.2%) and protein levels (24.9%). T treatment increased the expression of transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-beta1) at protein levels by 81.9% in the human scalp dermal fibroblasts (DFs). Pretreatment of finasteride decreased the expression of TGF-beta1 protein induced by an average of T (30.4%). The type I procollagen expression after pretreatment of neutralizing TGF-beta1 antibody (10 mug/ml) was inhibited by an average of 54.3%. Our findings suggest that T-induced TGF-beta1 and type I procollagen expression may contribute to the development of perifollicular fibrosis in the AGA, and the inhibitory effects on T-induced procollagen and TGF-beta1 expression may explain another possible mechanism how finasteride works in AGA.
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