Getting to the root of baldness

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The Independent Online
Scientists have discovered a "baldness gene" that causes hair loss all over the body, as experienced by the former champion swimmer Duncan Goodhew.

The gene is a rare mutation which leads to an extreme form of hereditary hair loss called alopecia universalis (AU): male and female sufferers have no scalp hair after an initial growth falls out soon after birth, nor eyebrows or pubic hair.

The discovery could lead to new understanding of the processes that lead to other forms of hair loss, and eventually to treatments for the condition.

-- Charles Arthur, Science Editor