Printer Friendly

Blame it on your sebaceous glands.

Blame it on your sebaceous glands

Sebaceous glands may be at the root of shiny pates, according to University of Miami (Fla.) researchers. The glands, which are adjacent to hair follicles and produce a protective coating for the skin and scalp, are physiologically different in bald men, they found.

Some people--including bald men--suggest that baldness is a sign of virility, believing that conventional male balding is caused by an excess of testosterone. But such balding, which begins in 40 percent of men between the ages of 18 and 39, is actually the result of an increased ability to use testosterone and not an increase of testosterone per se, says Marty E. Sawaya, one of the researchers. "You're really not more virile,' she says.

Sawaya and her colleagues compared sebaceous glands in scalp samples removed from 12 balding men (aged 25 to 39) during hair transplant or scalp reduction surgery with 12 samples removed from nonbald men (aged 30 to 47) soon after death. They measured the number of testosterone receptors, which allow cells to hang on to and use testosterone, as well as the concentration of an enzyme involved in testosterone metabolism. They found that sebaceous glands from the

bald men had twice the number of testosterone receptors, and double the enzyme level of sebaceous glands from the hairy scalps.

Sawaya says the discovery alone does not suggest a treatment. That would require an understanding of what is happening at the genetic level, she says.
COPYRIGHT 1986 Science Service, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1986, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:cause of baldness
Publication:Science News
Date:May 17, 1986
Words:245
Previous Article:Stalking the weather bomb.
Next Article:The flowers that bloom in the spring.
Topics:


Related Articles
Genes linked to baldness, missing teeth.
A rare case of a sebaceous nevus in the external auditory canal. (Original Article).
Back off veto threat.
City gets option to buy 2 Broadway buildings.
POLICE HONOR THOSE WHO DIED.
FOR THE RECORD.
OBITUARIES.
ICE AGE IDEA SURE TO MAKE AN IMPACT ON SCIENTISTS.
EX-CON GETS 29 YEARS IN SLAYING AUTHORITIES: DRUG DISPUTE CAUSE OF LANCASTER KILLING.
Risk factor: throat cancer linked to virus spread by sex.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters