February 15, 2008, Newsletter Issue #125: Male Hair Loss Gene

Tip of the Week

Sons can stop blaming their dads when they start balding prematurely because new research suggests male hair loss may be caused by their moms' genes. German scientists have discovered a gene on the X chromosome (which men inherit from their mothers) that plays a crucial role in male hair loss.

A man going bald is therefore likely to take after his maternal grandfather. The gene in question affects the androgen receptor (a protein that helps activate male hormones). Certain changes in the gene may result in receding hairlines and thinning of hair at the back of the head. Man, moms get blamed for everything!

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