If you are an African woman suffering hair loss issues, apparently it could be the effect of a certain gene. This was recently discovered after a renowned South African dermatologist, Ncoza Dlova, made the discovery after research with a team of other scientists at the University of KwaZulu-Natal where she is the Dean of Clinical Medicine.
The study was carried out between 2013 and 2017 and CCCA patients were picked from Durban in South Africa between 2013 and 2016 while others were picked from North Carolina between 2014 and 2017. CCCA is an acronym for Central Centrifugal Cicatricial Alopecia and it is basically hair loss which begins at the middle of the head and spreads outwards. CCCA causes the destruction of hair follicles which leads to permanent hair loss.
According to the university, most people have mistaken CCCA for regular baldness but they are two different phenomena caused differently. It has been blamed on several acts such as using hot combs, chemical products, straighteners, and heat brushes. From the study, it was discovered that the gene – peptidyl arginine deiminase 3 (PAD13) whose major function is facilitating hair growth was inhibited or mutated in most patients studied. The study also showed that there were several variants of PAD13.
Furthermore, it was revealed that though the above-mentioned practices were not the causes of CCCA, they helped to trigger it. This means that families who have the mutated gene should stay away from any of these acts. According to Dlova, this was about the biggest breakthrough in South African dermatology. She also went ahead to appreciate the patients who participated and their families for being part of the research.
The study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine which is about one of the most prestigious medical journals today.