Most deer antler spray users already know about the countless benefits that deer antler spray/IGF-1 can offer, whether it’s helping reduce the adverse effects of aging to helping promote lean muscle growth. However, there has been a substantial amount of research released in the last several years discussing the possibilities of deer antler velvet extract as an aid to hair growth.
Deers shed their antlers each year to grow new ones (which is where deer antler velvet itself comes from). Deer antlers are actually the only mammalian appendage that are able to regenerate, which probably explains many of the health and growth promotion properties that deer antler velvet possesses.
This made scientists curious to investigate whether or not deer antler velvet could have an effect on hair regrowth. As it turns out, the results of their studies seem to suggest exactly that.
The first study, conducted by Changkeun Sung and published in the Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences in 2012, studied the impact of deer antler velvet on hair growth in rats. Deer antler velvet extract was applied to rats’ skin for 40 days. By day 16, hair growth had markedly increased in the rats given deer antler extract compared to a control group that did not receive it. The control group’s hair growth was both shorter and rarer. At the end of the study, the group of rats with the deer antler velvet extract application showed a final hair length of .66cm and the control group only had a length of .22cm. Inspection of the tissues showed that the mice given antler extract experienced a marked increase in the size, depth, and number of their hair follicles.
Researchers leading a study published in the Scientific World Journal in February 2014 observed that when deer antler velvet extract was given to male mice, the anagen phase of their hair growth cycle was extended. This finding is significant because the anagen phase is where the actual growth of hair is done. The researchers note, “In the same study, we coincidentally observed that deer antler extract seemed to have a stimulatory effect on hair regrowth” (2014, Jing-jie Li et al.).
The scientists point to the IGF-1 found in deer antler velvet as the possible reason for this effect. They conclude that IGF-1 “may play a role in regulating the hair cycle and follicle cell proliferation” (2014, Jing-jie Li et al.).
Mice and humans share about 92% of the same genes, which is why mice are often used in scientific and medical studies pertaining to humans. This means that the incredible responses the mice experienced with deer antler velvet extract could potentially produce similar reactions in humans.
It’s pretty amazing to see another area of wellness where deer antler velvet/IGF-1 may be able to make a huge difference. These findings suggest that deer antler velvet extract may be a valuable element to include in hair growth treatment and could help benefit the millions of men and women who suffer from hair loss.
Sources: Jing-jie Li, Zheng Li, Li-juan Gu, Yun-bo Wang, Mi-ra Lee, and Chang-keun Sung, “Aqueous Extract of Red Deer Antler Promotes Hair Growth by Regulating the Hair Cycle and Cell Proliferation in Hair Follicles,” The Scientific World Journal, vol. 2014, Article ID 878162, 7 pages, 2014.
ZhiHong Yang, LiJuan Gu, DongLiang Zhang, Zheng Li, JingJie Li, MiRa Lee, ChunYan Wang, Zhen Wang, JeongHee Cho,Changkeun Sung, “Red Deer Antler Extract Accelerates Hair Growth by Stimulating Expression of Insulin-like Growth Factor I in Full-thickness Wound Healing Rat Model,” Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences (AJAS); 25(5): 708-716, 2012 (web).