Grey hair — one of the classic signs of aging that can lead to a midlife crisis, expensive visits to the colorist and root touch-up panic-attacks before important meetings — may soon be a thing of the past. For generations, numerous remedies have been concocted to hide gray hair but now, for the first time, an actual treatment that gets to the root of the problem has been developed.
Scientists from the Institute for Pigmentary Disorders in association with E.M. Arndt University of Greifswald, Germany and the Centre for Skin Sciences, School of Life Sciences at the University of Bradford, United Kingdom, have unraveled that people’s hair turns grey because of massive oxidative stress caused by a build up of hydrogen peroxide in hair follicles. This causes hair to bleach itself from the inside out.
The researchers have also found that this massive build up of hydrogen peroxide can be reversed with an UVB-activated compound called PC-KUS, a modified pseudocatalase. The research team has developed this new proprietary treatment that can reverse the loss of pigment cells returning the color back to white hair.
The science behind PC-KUS is complicated, but here’s a simplified explanation of how it works:
When it is applied topically to hair, it converts hydrogen peroxide in the follicle to harmless water and oxygen, thereby blocking it from accumulating in the follicle. This allows the hair to retain its natural color.
The PC-KUS treatment is also effective for patients with vitiligo; a long-term skin problem that produces white depigmentation patches that develop and spread in certain sections of skin.
Currently the treatment is still in experimental stages, when this graying and vitiligo treatment would become available for regular consumers to purchase is still undeclared. Stay posted!
Gray Hair Facts
Three-quarters of people 45 to 65 have grey hair, according to a study published last year in the British Journal of Dermatology.
Other Researches In The Pipeline: Catalase-based products aren’t the only ones touting anti-gray cures. L’Oreal has been researching a fruit extract that mimics the enzyme TRP-2, which helps make pigment-producing cells called melanocytes, and several media outlets have reported the cosmetics company is working on a pill with an anticipated 2015 launch