Taurine’s beneficial role in hair growth is well established. Its primary mechansims of action of action in this regard is that it stimulates peripheral circulation and inhibits fibrosis, which occurs in response to the sustained peri-follicular inflammation seen in Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA). The negative effects of peri-follicular fibrosis were concluded to be a causative factor in hair loss in a published study. 

 Androgenetic alopecia in males: a histopathological and ultrastructural study

J Cosmet Dermatol. 2009 Jun;8(2):83-91
Androgenetic alopecia in males: a histopathological and ultrastructural study.
El-Domyati M, Attia S, Saleh F, Abdel-Wahab H.

Department of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine, Al-Minya University, Al-Minya, Egypt.

Background Androgenetic alopecia is a common cosmetic hair disorder, resulting from interplay of genetic, endocrine, and aging factors leading to a patterned follicular miniaturization. Microinflammation seems to be a potential active player in this process. Aims To study the histopathological and ultrastructural changes occurring in male androgenetic alopecia (AGA). Patients/methods Fifty-five subjects were included in this study (40 with AGA and 15 as normal age-matched controls). Skin biopsies from frontal bald area and occipital hairy area were subjected to histopathological examination, immunohistochemical staining for collagen I and ultrastructural study. Results The frontal bald area of patients showed highly significant increase in telogen hairs and decrease in anagen/telogen ratio and terminal/vellus hair ratio (P < 0.001). Perifollicular inflammation was almost a constant feature in early cases and showed a significant correlation with perifollicular fibrosis (P = 0.048), which was more marked with thickening of the follicular sheath in advanced cases. Conclusion Follicular microinflammation plays an integral role in the pathogenesis of AGA in early cases. Over time, thickening of perifollicular sheath takes place due to increased deposition of collagen, resulting in marked perifollicular fibrosis, and sometimes ends by complete destruction of the affected follicles in advanced cases.

      A study by L’Oreal demonstrated Taurine’s protective effects against the fibrotic processes of hormonal hair loss.

Protective effects of taurine on human hair follicle grown in vitro.
Collin C, Gautier B, Gaillard O, Hallegot P, Chabane S, Bastien P, Peyron M, Bouleau M, Thibaut S, Pruche F, Duranton A, Bernard BA.

Taurine is a naturally occurring beta-amino acid produced by methionine and cysteine metabolism. It is involved in a variety of physiological functions, including immunomodulatory and antifibrotic. Taking advantage of the ability of human hair follicle grown in vitro to recapitulate most of the characteristic features of normal hair follicle in vivo, we studied (i) taurine uptake by isolated human hair follicles; (ii) its effects on hair growth and survival rate; and (iii) its protective potential against transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1, an inhibitor of in vitro hair growth and a master switch of fibrotic program. We showed that taurine was taken up by the connective tissue sheath, proximal outer root sheath and hair bulb, promoted hair survival in vitro and prevented TGF-beta1-induced deleterious effects on hair follicle.

      L’Oreal, based on these findings, launched a Taurine based, nutraceutical hair growth supplement in Europe, Hair Mass and Hair Mass for Men.

A Hairloss Treatment Pill for Men and Women from L’Oreal

      Taurine is a well researched and documented treatment for other fibrosis conditions, including pulmonary, cystic, and liver.

      This study evaluates Taurine’s ability to counter hair loss mechanisms other than fibrosis, in this case the stress mechanisms associated with Androgenetic Alopecia. It compared Taurine with both finasteride (Propecia) and the new and highly regarded anti- hair loss compound from UCLA, astressin- B. The conclusions stated in bold at the end of the abstract speak for themselves. Taurine outperformed them both. 

Simulative Evaluation of Taurine Against Alopecia Caused by Stress in Caenorhabditis elegans.
Kim H, Chang H, Lee DH.
Department of Life Sciences, University of Seoul, Seoul, 130-743, South Korea.

Hair loss or alopecia has been portrayed as a modern malady which is aggravated by stressful conditions. Major cases of alopecia were found among individuals of 40s-50s, nowadays, even among the 20s-30s. This study characterized taurine’s potential against alopecia caused by hormones and chemical stress agents based on the comparison with other commercially available anti-alopecia agents using Caenorhabditis elegans. The criteria used are their effects on the expression of stress markers and measurements of vital signs: lifespan comparison, progeny number, and mobility. C. elegans showed the typical stress symptoms under treatment with tunicamycin, endoplasmic reticulum stress agent. Hsp-70 protein expression increased, while worm’s lifespan and per capita progeny number significantly decreased along with an unusually retarded movement. A positive response was shown when worms were treated with taurine along with astressin-B and finasteride. Between the treatments, finasteride showed better outcomes in terms of stress-reducing effects. Taurine helped worms recover even more effectively from adverse influence of stress. In conclusion, there is strong evidence that taurine has a great potential as anti-alopecia effect, especially against the one exacerbated by stress. The present study implies that taurine might strongly work against hair loss when used in combination with other commercially available -anti-alopecia agents.

      In addition to all its benefits for hair growth, taking Taurine just might make you function and feel better . There is an ever accumulating body of evidence that even modest doses taurine, via several mechanisms, helps reduce both anxiety and depression.

      As a nootropic, Taurine may be used to reduce anxiety while promoting sleep and relaxation. There is also evidence that this supplement can augment LTP which is the process that results in memory formation.

      Taurine activates receptors for the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA which is known to have an anxiolytic effect on the brain. Finasteride, (Propecia) conversely down-regulates GABA activity, which is why in addition to sexual side effects, it is documented to produce anxiety, depression, and cognitive deficits in both animal and human studies.

      A team of scientist discovered that using this supplement significantly reduced social anxiety symptoms (an unfortunate correlate of hair loss) and improved social interaction scores.

      Taurine, given its scant cost, does so much for so little. Although L’Oreal used a mere 150 mg in their hair growth nutraceutical, we recommend 1-3 grams, (1,000- 3,000 mg) a day.