Planta Med 2016; 82(01/02): 65-69
DOI: 10.1055/s-0035-1557897
Biological and Pharmacological Activitiy
Original Papers
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Topical Treatment of Hair Loss with Formononetin by Modulating Apoptosis

Mi Hye Kim
1  College of Korean Medicine and Institute of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea
,
You Yeon Choi
1  College of Korean Medicine and Institute of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea
,
Ji Eun Lee
1  College of Korean Medicine and Institute of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea
,
Kyuseok Kim
2  Department of Ophthalmology, Otorhinolaryngology and Dermatology of Korean Medicine, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
,
Woong Mo Yang
1  College of Korean Medicine and Institute of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

received 24 December 2014
revised 01 May 2015

accepted 29 July 2015

Publication Date:
12 January 2016 (online)

Abstract

Formononetin is one of the main components of red clover plants and its role on hair regrowth against hair loss has not been established yet. In the present study, we assessed the potential effects of formononetin on alopecia, along with impaired hair cycles by induction of apoptosis-regression.

Depilated C57BL/6 mice were used for monitoring the hair cycles. Formononetin (1 and 100 µM) was topically treated to the dorsal skin for 14 days. Topical formononetin treatment induced miniaturized hair follicles to recover to normal sizes. Tapering hair shaft began to grow newly, emerging from the hair follicles by formononetin. In addition, formononetin inhibited the activation of caspase-8 and decreased the procaspase-9 expression. As a result of formononetin treatment, anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 was up-regulated, whereas pro-apoptotic Bax and p53 were down-regulated, resulting in a decrease of caspase-3 activation. Formononetin showed the obvious inhibition of apoptosis under terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling staining thereafter.

Taken together, our findings demonstrate that formononetin exerted the hair regrowth effect on hair loss, in which the underlying mechanisms were associated with Fas/Fas L-induced caspase activation, thus inhibiting apoptosis.