Could 3D Printed Hair Follicles Be The Future Of Hair Loss Treatments?

A number of new technologies are continually being introduced in the world of cosmetic surgery and with the increase in demand for hair loss treatments for both men and women, it is easy to see the rate with which hair implant technologies will develop is likely to grow. One report shows that global cosmetics firm L’Oréal believes that 3D printed hair follicles could be the future of hair transplant procedures– but how?

One of the biggest hypes in technology this year has been 3D printing following April reports suggesting that the 3D printing industry has surpassed $5.1 billion, showing a huge amount of growth. With the increase in investment into this industry, some big beauty companies are also looking to the future and taking a look at how 3D printing could be implemented in future cosmetic procedures.

Current Hair Loss Treatments & Procedures

Here at Longevita, we carry out FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) techniques when it comes to hair transplants in Turkey, which involves hair follicles being harvested from an area of the scalp where hair growth is strong, and individually transplanted through a number of grafts to the affected area. While we also offer FUT (Follicular Unit Transplantation), the surgeons generally prefer FUE. Whether the cause of hair loss is genetic, or caused through a number of other factors such as illness, hormones or a side-effect of medication, the process can be extremely distressing for the patient. This is why many patients seek hair loss procedures such as FUE or FUT.

L’Oréal Partnership

The cosmetics firm L’Oréal is partnering up with bio-printing company Poietis. Poietis has said to have developed a form of laser printing that can actually print out cell-based objects. L’Oréal believes that this form of technology could lead to 3D printed hair follicles, which would save the extraction of existing hair follicles from the scalp, giving the process the potential opportunity to help put less stress on the scalp and therefore reducing the risk of causing any damage or strain on the body through invasive procedures. While L’Oréal already uses 3D printed skin for product research, hair follicles have never been made in this way before and adapting the process could take a number of years.

3D Printed Hair Follicle Process

The first step of the process would be to create a digital map that creates a biological structure by helping to determine where living cells and tissue components are placed. This is then adapted into a set of instructions for the printing equipment, in order for each tiny droplets to be created out of a cell-based bio ink. Every time the laser within the printer finds a ribbon which contains the bio ink, a drop of matter will fall into place. Every second, around 10,000 of these matter droplets are created. After this, the organic tissue that is generated from the matter will take time to grow. While it takes just 10 minutes to generate a piece of skin that is just 1cm wide by 0.5mm thick, because of the complexity of the hair follicle structure, the process is likely to take a lot longer than predicted.

While the research and development of this technology is one that will take a number of years before any chance of implementation, it is something that a number of people will be watching with great interest. If you are interested in having hair transplant surgery in Istanbul, Turkey then be sure to contact us today.

Reviewed and Approved by Trichologist Yaprak Yazan

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