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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1994 Aug 16;91(17):8014-6.

A parathyroid hormone antagonist stimulates epidermal proliferation and hair growth in mice.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Boston University Medical Center, MA 02118.


The biologic action of parathyroid hormone (PTH)-related peptide (PTHrP) in normal skin was investigated in cultured human keratinocytes and in SKH-1 hairless mice. The results indicate that the PTHrP agonists human PTHrP-(1-34) and PTH(1-34) are potent inhibitors of epidermal cell proliferation. [Nle8,18,Tyr34]bovine PTH-(7-34)-amide, an antagonist of the PTH/PTHrP receptor, blocked the inhibitory effect of PTH-(1-34) in cultured keratinocytes. In the SKH-1 mice, PTH-(7-34) caused a 244% increase of [3H]thymidine incorporation into isolated epidermal DNA and 246% and 180% increases in the number and length of hair shafts, respectively. Thus, PTH and PTHrP may play an important role in the normal physiology of skin, and their agonists and antagonists have potentially wide therapeutic applications in the treatment of hyperproliferative skin disorders and aging skin and could also be effective in stimulating and maintaining hair growth.

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