White hair is looked upon as a sign of old age, but recent research discovered hair can be bleached into white as a harmless side effect of new treatments of advanced melanoma.
Melanoma is a malignant tumor of melanocytes that most often affects skin. Known as the least common type of skin cancer, it has been found to be the cause of 75 per cent of fatal cases of skin cancer.
A study presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago investigated the influence of two experimental drugs, ipilimumab and tremelimumab, expected to effectively block CTLA-4, strengthen the immune system and thus help the body fight cancer.
The new drugs, made from various human antibodies, manifested an unexpected side effect to the consumers’ hair, making it white.
It was further discovered that patients whose hair reacted to the administration of the drug responded to it in the best way possible, indicating that hair discoloration can be regarded as an early sign of the drugs taking effect.
Lead researcher Anna Pavlick says that the depigmentation sets in six months to one year after initiating therapy; eyebrows react the first, after which the process spreads on to the crown of the hair.
Source of the image: Photl.com.