Acta histochemica

Antimicrobial peptide lysozyme has the potential to promote mouse hair follicle growth in vitro.

PMID 26257011


Lysozyme is a well-known antimicrobial peptide that exists widely in mammalian skin and it is also expressed by pilosebaceous units. However, the exact location of lysozyme in hair follicles and whether it exerts any direct effects on hair follicle growth are unclear. To determine whether lysozyme affected hair growth in vitro, micro-dissected mouse vibrissae follicles (VFs) were treated in serum-free organ culture for 3 days with lysozyme (1-10μg/ml). After that, the effects of lysozyme on dermal papilla (DP) cells were also investigated. Lysozyme was mainly identified in DP and dermal sheath regions of VF by immunochemistry. In addition, 5-10μg/ml lysozyme had a promoting effect on shaft production. It was also associated with significant proliferation of matrix keratinocytes by immunofluorescence observation. Furthermore, lysozyme promoted hair growth by increasing the levels of alkaline phosphatase and lymphoid enhancer factor 1 in DP, as determined by Western blotting. These results indicate that lysozyme is a promoter of VF growth via enhancing the hair-inductive capacity of DP cells during organ culture.