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expert reaction to association of male-pattern baldness with early heart disease

New research, presented at the 69th Annual Conference of the Cardiological Society of India, examines the association between male-pattern baldness and premature greying and risk of early heart disease.

 

Prof. Alun Hughes, Professor of Cardiovascular Physiology and Pharmacology at UCL, said:

“Correlations between grey hair and risk of heart disease have been observed before1, although a causal link has not been demonstrated. Nevertheless, since grey hair is due to impaired renewal of melanocyte stem cells, people have speculated that it may be an indicator of DNA damage associated with aging. Also, since hair follicles are a target for androgens (e.g. testosterone) it has been suggested that early male pattern baldness could reflect differences in responses to androgens that might influence the risk of heart disease.”

1 For example, in 2014, a large prospective study of 10,885 Danish people followed up for 35 years (the Copenhagen City Heart Study) reported that grey hair predicted future heart disease (after taking age and sex into account), but this correlation could be explained by taking account of other cardiovascular risk factors.

 

* ‘Male-pattern baldness and premature greying associated with risk of early heart disease’ was presented at the 69th Annual Conference of the Cardiological Society of India on Thursday 30 November. 

 

Declared interests

None received.

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