Since scalp hair loss has increased recently even in young people, seriously affecting individual's quality of life, the hair growth-stimulating effects of Laminaria japonica extract (LJE) and Cistanche tubulosa extract (CTE) were investigated. After confirming anagen phase of follicles under shaving, male C57BL/6 mice were dermally applied with 3% Minoxidil or orally administered with the combinations of LJE and CTE for 21 days. Minoxidil promoted the hair regrowth and increased γ-glutamyl transpeptidase (γ-GTP) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activities. In addition, Minoxidil up-regulated epidermal growth factor (EGF) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels. Co-administration of LJE and CTE at 54 mg/kg LJE plus 162 mg/kg CTE exerted synergistic promoting effects on the hair regrowth, comparable to 3% Minoxidil. LJE preferentially enhanced ALP activity, while CTE increased both γ-GTP and ALP activities as well as EGF and VEGF expressions. In vivo air pouch inflammation model, carrageenan-induced vascular exudation and increased nitric oxide and prostaglandin E2 concentrations in the exudates were synergistically suppressed by co-administration of LJE and CTE. In addition, inflammatory cell infiltration was substantially inhibited by the combinational treatment. The results suggest that combinational oral treatment with LJE and CTE in appropriate doses and ratios prevent hair loss and improve alopecia, which might be in part mediated by their anti-inflammatory activities.
Keywords: Cistanche tubulosa; Hair growth; Laminaria japonica; combinational treatment; inflammation.