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Scientists prove link between stress and gray hair

According to a study by Harvard and FRMP-USP universities, white hair is affected by melanin-producing cells

Men and women can have white hair around 30 years of age, with the reference to graying parents being a good indicator of "when" it will happen. However, even with the gentica playing a big role in this, the stress It is also an important pillar.

And even then, scientists knew that this happened, but they did not have an exact definition. It turns out that a study by researchers from Harvard University and the Ribeiro Preto Medical School (FMRP-USP) have discovered how this process works. The Brazilian Thiago Mattar Cunha he worked with American laboratories to carry out new tests and reach the same conclusions as gringos.

When testing with mice, they saw that the binding was in melanin producing cells (which are responsible for hair and skin color) and not sympathetic nervous system, which takes care of the body's escape reaction. When placed under stress, these nerves release noradrenaline, which is absorbed by pigment regenerating stem cells.

Causing pain in the (poor) lab rats, there was the release of adrenaline and cortisol, resulting in heart acceleration and increased blood pressure, that is, stress caused by affecting the nervous system. This resulted in white hair that, according to Bing Zhang (lead author of the study), have ?permanent damage? and cannot have their pigment restored.

white haired miceMouse before and after stress (Reproduction; BBC / WILLIAM A GONCALVES)

The anti-gray hair science

In tests performed on mice under the effect of antihypertensive drugs, the effects have been canceled. By comparing the genes of the tested mouse with others, one can identify the protein that damaged the cells. When such a protein (CDK, or cyclin-dependent kinase) was suppressed, the treatment was able to prevent the change of white hair.

Now there is an opening for science: just explore the chemistry that takes care of the protein to prevent gray hair. The teacher Ya-Cieh Hsu, from Harvard, comments in a BBC interview that the findings ?it's not a cure for the treatment of gray hair "this being the" beginning of a long journey in search of finding an intervention for people. This also gives an idea of ??how stress can affect other parts of our body ?.

It is worth emphasizing that the only way out for gray hair caused by aging, from the point of view of current science, is still to dye them (or change hair color with augmented reality). However, according to a publication by Medical News Today, eating foods rich in antioxidants like green tea, fruits and vegetables are a way of reduce stress oxidative. Protein deficiencies can also be an aggravating factor, as the text says to solve this part, just a visit to the nutritionist is enough!

The Harvard study was sent in May 2019 and only accepted in December, being published yesterday (22) and can be viewed in full via Nature.com (in English).

Sources: ScienceDaily, BBC and DW