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Tissue engineering of human hair follicles using a biomimetic developmental approach

Abaci, Hasan Erbil; Coffman, Abigail; Doucet, Yanne; Chen, James; Jacków, Joanna; Wang, Etienne; Guo, Zongyou; Shin, Jung U.; Jahoda, Colin A.; Christiano, Angela M.

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Hasan Erbil Abaci

Abigail Coffman

Yanne Doucet

James Chen

Joanna Jacków

Etienne Wang

Zongyou Guo

Jung U. Shin

Angela M. Christiano


Human skin constructs (HSCs) have the potential to provide an effective therapy for patients with significant skin injuries and to enable human-relevant drug screening for skin diseases; however, the incorporation of engineered skin appendages, such as hair follicles (HFs), into HSCs remains a major challenge. Here, we demonstrate a biomimetic approach for generation of human HFs within HSCs by recapitulating the physiological 3D organization of cells in the HF microenvironment using 3D-printed molds. Overexpression of Lef-1 in dermal papilla cells (DPC) restores the intact DPC transcriptional signature and significantly enhances the efficiency of HF differentiation in HSCs. Furthermore, vascularization of hair-bearing HSCs prior to engraftment allows for efficient human hair growth in immunodeficient mice. The ability to regenerate an entire HF from cultured human cells will have a transformative impact on the medical management of different types of alopecia, as well as chronic wounds, which represent major unmet medical needs.


Abaci, H. E., Coffman, A., Doucet, Y., Chen, J., Jacków, J., Wang, E., …Christiano, A. M. (2018). Tissue engineering of human hair follicles using a biomimetic developmental approach. Nature Communications, 9(1), Article 5301.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 25, 2018
Online Publication Date Dec 13, 2018
Publication Date Dec 13, 2018
Deposit Date Jan 3, 2019
Publicly Available Date Jan 3, 2019
Journal Nature Communications
Publisher Nature Research
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 9
Issue 1
Article Number 5301


Published Journal Article (15.9 Mb)

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