Effects of a gintonin-enriched fraction on hair growth: an in vitro and in vivo study

Effects of a gintonin-enriched fraction on hair growth: an in vitro and in vivo study
Issue Date
Journal of Ginseng Research
VOL 44, NO 1-177
Background Ginseng has been widely used as a health-promoting tonic. Gintonin present in ginseng acts as a lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) receptor ligand that activates six LPA receptor subtypes. The LPA6 subtype plays a key role in normal hair growth, and mutations in the LPA6 receptor impair normal human hair growth. Currently, human hair loss and alopecia are concerning issues that affect peoples' social and day-to-day lives. Objective We investigated the in vitro and in vivo effects of a gintonin-enriched fraction (GEF) on mouse hair growth. Methods Human hair follicle dermal papilla cells (HFDPCs) and six-week-old male C57BL/6 mice were used. The mice were divided into the four groups: control, 1% minoxidil, 0.75% GEF, and 1.5% GEF. The dorsal hair was removed to synchronize the telogen phase. Each group was treated topically, once a day, for 15 days. We analyzed hair growth activity and histological changes. Results GEF induced transient [Ca2+]i, which stimulated HFDPC proliferation and caused 5-bromo-2′-deoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation in a concentration-dependent manner. GEF-mediated HFDPC proliferation was blocked by the LPA receptor antagonist and Ca2+ chelator. HFDPC treatment with GEF stimulated vascular endothelial growth factor release. Topical application of GEF and minoxidil promoted hair growth in a dose-dependent manner. Histological analysis showed that GEF and minoxidil increased the number of hair follicles and hair weight. Conclusion Topical application of GEF promotes mouse hair growth through HFDPC proliferation. GEF could be one of the main components of ginseng that promote hair growth and could be used to treat human alopecia.
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