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NCBI Activity: Male Pattern Baldness

Group:
Ben Ernest, Joel Bucci, Letitia Olson

Goal: to find more information on male pattern baldness, how chemical imbalances and genetic variations cause hair loss, and potential treatments for this disorder

Introduction:
Male pattern baldness has several potential causes including endocrine disorders and genetic mutations, among others.  The hair loss is initiated by dysfunction in the anagen or telogen phases of the hair cycle.  Conversion of androgens to dihydrotestosterone shortens the anagen phase in hair development causing hair follicles to be miniaturized.
Mutations in androgen receptors affecting binding may also cause baldness. Recently there has been a large-scale screening of patients with male pattern baldness to determine an additional “at risk” allele that is correlated with androgenic alopecia when combined with other alleles.
Male pattern baldness in women has been shown in some cases to be caused by elevated testosterone levels resulting from an androgen-secreting tumor.  Upon the removal of the tumor the testosterone levels revert to normal and hair loss soon ceases.

References:

Alopecia: Possible Causes and Treatments, Particularly in Captive Nonhuman Primates
Comp Med. 2009 February; 59(1): 18–26.
Published online 2009 February.

Laparoscopic Adrenalectomy – A Cure for Male Pattern Baldness
Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 2007 January; 89(1): 43.
doi: 10.1308/147870807X160371.

Male-pattern baldness susceptibility locus at 20p11
Nat Genet. 2008 November; 40(11): 1282–1284.
Published online 2008 October 12. doi: 10.1038/ng.255.

Background:
For more background on Male pattern baldness see the Hair chapter in Clinical Methods. This can be found at the following link.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/bookshelf/br.fcgi?book=cm&part=A3348#A3354

Search:
We saved a search strategy that will alert us once a month when new articles on alopecia are uploaded to the NCBI database.  So that we can stay up to date with new research being done on this disorder.

Tips:
When coming across an unfamiliar term or acronym use the find function (ctrl + f or cmd + f) to find the first mention of the term where it will be better defined.

Use the Links button on the side of the NCBI PubMed search to find more information related to the article, and subject you are searching.

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