PGD2 - our greatest (follicular) foe

I CALL it "the island". A friend prefers "petit chapeau", which makes it sound almost desirable in his native French. But it isn't desirable, just the sorry remainder of a forelock that was once so thick my barber of 20 years joked he needed shears to hack through it. The same barber now snips charitably at a tuft during a haircut that takes him six minutes.

But hair-llelujah! Seven million British men with failing follicles now have something to blame. PGD2, a pesky protein, has been identified by scientists at the University of Pennsylvania. They found that hair-free areas on men with male pattern baldness had high levels of PGD2. Existing drugs can inhibit the activity of the protein, which could lead to the development of an ointment.

Sales of balding "cures" doubled last year compared to the previous year at Tesco, while Jason Donovan admitted this week to being the latest celebrity slap-head to have done a "Rooney" and got a transplant. Man's vanity shows no sign of receding but the scientists say any new solution would prevent loss but not re-populate bald patches. To which I say, nah. I wouldn't chose to go bald, but my island is mine and if it wants to drift and diminish like an iceberg in the Caribbean, then let it.

The words "hair" and "ointment" together on a bottle, evoking images of desperate combovers, would be enough to put me off. Do your worst, PGD2 - see if I care.

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