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Dermatol Clin. 2013 Jan;31(1):1-19. doi: 10.1016/j.det.2012.08.006. Epub 2012 Sep 24.

The basic science of hair biology: what are the causal mechanisms for the disordered hair follicle?

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Department of Dermatology and Skin Science, The University of British Columbia, 835 West Tenth Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada.


A hair disorder can be difficult to define, but patients are typically motivated to seek treatment when their hair growth patterns are significantly different from their cultural group or when growth patterns change significantly. The causes of hair disorders are many and varied, but fundamentally the disorder is a consequence of aberrant alterations of normal hair biology. The potential trigger factors for hair disorders can be attributed to inflammation, genetics, the environment, or hormones, of which the relative contributions vary for different diagnoses, between individuals, and over time. This article discusses the causal mechanisms for the disordered hair follicle.

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