For the first time, a team of U.S. scientists has developed a technique to convert human stem cells into a type of cell that is capable of initiating hair growth. When these cells were transplanted into mice lacking hair, they successfully induced human hair growth, suggesting that with further development, this method could lead to a cell-based treatment for people suffering hair loss.
This could lead to new treatment methods for diseases that are caused by deformed proteins, such as Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, and Parkinson’s.
On the beauty side of things, collagen and other connective proteins in the skin permanently denatures and deforms as it ages and is exposed to UV as well, we may one day be able to reform those collagen proteins into their “youthful” form!
The OH (oxygen and hydrogen, or hydroxyl) molecules have been replaced by an amine group – the nitrogen and two hydrogen molecules.
There are other topical forms of niacin, where the hydroxyl group has been replaced by a fatty acid – but their use is patented (NIA24 products).
Niacin isn’t often used topically because it causes prostaglandin release, which results in skin flushing and itching. Niacinamide and other forms of niacin don’t have this undesirable side-effect.
Niacinamide is quite stable, but in the right conditions can hydrolyze (breakdown in water) to niacin.
This is a concern for manufacturers who need to ensure long-term stability of their products, but should not be of particular worry for people using a product containing niacinamide and then another containing an acid (or vice-versa).
The reason being is that this hydrolysis takes a considerable amount of time. At a pH of 2 and 90°C it takes over 75 hours to convert half of the niacinamide in to niacin. Heat greatly speeds up chemical interactions, and at normal temperatures this translates in to weeks, if not months.
While it’s certainly true and possible that a small amount of niacin will form, for most people it won’t be enough to cause skin flushing.