Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, Cheju National University, 66 Jejudaehakno, Jeju 690-756, South Korea, Department of Veterinary Medicine, College of Veterinary medicine, Cheju National University, 66 Jejudaehakno, Jeju 690-756, South Korea
This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of Schisandra nigra, a plant native to Jeju Island, South Korea, on the promotion of hair growth. When rat vibrissa follicles were treated with 85% ethanol (EtOH) extract of S. nigra, the hair-fiber lengths of the vibrissa follicles increased significantly. In addition, after topical application of the EtOH extract of S. nigra onto the back of C57BL/6 mice every other day, anagen progression of the hair shaft was induced. Moreover, the extract increased both the expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in the bulb matrix region and the proliferation of immortalized vibrissa dermal papilla cells. In order to determine the mechanism by which S. nigra promotes hair growth, we examined its relationship with the transforming growth factor-β2 (TGF-β2) signal pathway, which is known to be a regulator of catagen induction. When the vibrissa follicles in the anagen phase were treated with S. nigra extract for 7 days, the expression of TGF-β2 in the bulb matrix region was found to be lower than that of the control follicles that were expected to be in the anagen-catagen transition phase. These results suggest that S. nigra extract has the potential to promote hair growth via down regulation of TGF-β2 and the proliferation of dermal papilla.