5-Alpha Reductase (5a Reductase) is an enzyme that catalyzes the irreversible reduction of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone. So how does 5-alpha reductase effect hair loss? Lets take an in-depth review.
Androgenic alopecia results in follicular miniaturization. Androgenic alopecia is the scientific name for male and female pattern baldness. Androgenic alopecia is characterized by thinning of the hair in the early stages while follicular loss is characteristic of advanced stages. The rate of hair loss is dependent on age, genetics and over production of male hormones collectively known as androgens. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is the androgen that is relevant in androgenic alopecia. A person who has inherited the necessary genes for hair lost is genetically predisposed to DHT. DHT is synthesized from free testosterone in the dermal papilla by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase 2. DHT binds to androgen receptors in dermal papilla of hair follicles and by an unknown mechanism activates the genes responsible for follicular miniaturization. Androgen receptors are more prevalent in people who suffer from androgenic alopecia then people who do not have androgenic alopecia.