News of the WeekCancer Research

Preventing Hair Loss From Chemotherapy

Science  05 Jan 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5501, pp. 25-26
DOI: 10.1126/science.10.1126/SCIENCE.291.5501.25A

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Summary

Many chemotherapeutic agents cause hair loss because they are aimed at rapidly dividing cells--one of the defining characteristics of cancer cells. The problem is that these drugs also kill normal dividing cells, including those of the hair follicle. On page 134, researchers report that they can prevent chemotherapy-induced hair loss in rats by rubbing the animals' skin with a newly developed drug that targets an enzyme which drives a key step in the cell division cycle before administering the chemotherapy.

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