We report the results of a study carried out to investigate the effect of helium-neon (He-Ne) laser (632.8 nm) irradiation on the hair follicle growth cycle of testosterone-treated and untreated mice. Both histology and optical coherence tomography (OCT) were used for the measurement of hair follicle length and the relative percentage of hair follicles in different growth phases. A positive correlation (R = 0.96) was observed for the lengths of hair follicles measured by both methods. Further, the ratios of the lengths of hair follicles in the anagen and catagen phases obtained by both methods were nearly the same. However, the length of the hair follicles measured by both methods differed by a factor of 1.6, with histology showing smaller lengths. He-Ne laser irradiation (at approximately 1 J/cm(2)) of the skin of both the control and the testosterone-treated mice was observed to lead to a significant increase (p < 0.05) in % anagen, indicating stimulation of hair growth. The study also demonstrates that OCT can be used to monitor the hair follicle growth cycle, and thus hair follicle disorders or treatment efficacy during alopecia.
(c) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.