Researchers discover AI tools can help regrow hair

November 16, 2022

Researchers discover AI tools can help regrow hairSome men and women afflicted with hair loss also face significant blows to their self-esteem, as hair is often tied to perceived attractiveness and self-confidence. In the latest advancement to treat hair loss, Chinese researchers have sought out artificial intelligence (AI)-based methods to regenerate hair.

The researchers have developed an AI-powered microneedle patch that could be used to predict compounds that could neutralise baldness-causing reactive oxygen species in the scalp.

Most people with substantial hair loss have the condition androgenic alopecia, also called male- or female-pattern baldness. In this condition, hair follicles in the scalp can be damaged by androgens, inflammation or an overabundance of reactive oxygen species, such as oxygen free radicals. When the levels of oxygen free radicals are too high, they can overwhelm the body’s antioxidant enzymes that typically keep them in check.

One of these enzymes is called superoxide dismutase (SOD). Researchers have created SOD mimics called “nanozymes” which were reportedly not very good at removing oxygen free radicals. The Chinese researchers wanted to see whether machine learning, a form of AI, could help them design a better nanozyme for treating hair loss.

The researchers chose and tested machine-learning models with 91 different transition-metal, phosphate and sulfate combinations as potential nanozyme candidates. The techniques predicted that a candidate known as MnPS3 would have the most powerful SOD-like ability.

Further testing of MnPS3 nanosheets with human skin fibroblast cells showed how the nanosheets significantly reduced the levels of reactive oxygen species without causing harm.

Based on these results, the researchers prepared MnPS3 microneedle patches and treated androgenic alopecia-affected mouse models with them. Within 13 days, the animals regenerated thicker hair strands that more densely covered their previously bald backsides than mice treated with testosterone or minoxidil.

The researchers concluded that their study both produced a nanozyme treatment for regenerating hair, and indicated the potential for computer-based methods for use in the design of future nanozyme therapeutics.

Category: Education, Features

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