"We identified hundreds of new genetic signals". Two thirds of American men will experience some form of hair loss by the age of 35, and 85 percent of men will have significantly thinning hair by the age of 50, according to the American Hair Loss Association. More to the point for those anxious about it is the second half of this sentence: "The results of this study might help identify those at greatest risk of hair loss, and also potential genetic targets for intervention", says a study co-author, per NBC News. As of now, the scientists can't confidently predict results for individuals, but they can "identify subgroups of the population for which the risk of hair loss is much higher", lending to the belief that the algorithm will continue to improve. Another 12,000 had slight hair loss; 14,000 had moderate hair loss and 9,800 had severe hair loss.
The male hormone, testosterone, replaces the old hair in the scalp with comparatively shorter and thinner hair which starts growing from the temples and crowns of the head. However, a recent study - the largest genetic analysis of male pattern baldness ever conducted - has become the first to detail exactly which genes are involved. 'However, these results take us one step closer.
Researchers looked at health and genomic data for 52,000 participants from the United Kingdom biobank and were able to pinpoint 287 genetic regions linked to male baldness, the largest amount ever discovered. About 14 percent of the genes could be traced to the X chromosome - one of the sex-determining chromosomes - that the men received from their mother at conception.
Finding what genes are at the root of hair loss in men could lead to treatments that not only put fur back on top but also prevent serious diseases. In men, the loss of hair is seen as a receding hairline. Women can also be affected by hair loss and it is called female pattern hair loss.
"It was interesting to find that numerous genetics signals for male pattern baldness came from the X chromosome, which men inherit from their mothers", Saskia Hagenaars, a PhD student from the university, said in a statement. Part of the formula was based on genetic markers that were absent or present in the genes. The findings could provide possible targets for drug development to treat baldness, according to the researchers.
Forty of the genetic variations were located on the X chromosome, which men inherit from their mothers, the researchers said.