Open Access Research article

Hematological and hepatic effects of vascular epidermal growth factor (VEGF) used to stimulate hair growth in an animal model

Laís Angelo Gnann1, Rafael Ferreira Castro1, Ligia Ajaime Azzalis2, David Feder1, Fabio Ferreira Perazzo2, Edimar Cristiano Pereira3, Paulo César Pires Rosa2, Virginia Berlanga Campos Junqueira3, Katya Cristina Rocha1, Carlos D’ Aparecida Machado1, Francisco Camargo Paschoal1, Luiz Carlos de Abreu1, Vitor Engrácia Valenti1 and Fernando Luiz Affonso Fonseca13*

Author Affiliations

1 Disciplina de Farmacologia, Departamento de Morfologia, Faculdade de Medicina do ABC, Av. Príncipe de Gales, n. 821, Santo André, SP, Brazil

2 Instituto de Ciências Ambientais, Químicas e Farmacêuticas, Departamento de Ciências Exatas e da Terra, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Diadema, SP, Brazil

3 Instituto de Ciências Ambientais, Químicas e Farmacêuticas, Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Diadema, SP, Brazil

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BMC Dermatology 2013, 13:15  doi:10.1186/1471-5945-13-15

Published: 29 October 2013



Alopecia areata is the hair loss usually reversible, in sharply defined areas. The treatment of alopecia using growth factors shows interesting activity in promoting hair growth. In this concept, VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) is a marker of angiogenesis, stimulating hair growth by facilitating the supply of nutrients to the hair follicle, increasing follicular diameter. The aim of this study was the evaluation of a topical gel enriched with VEGF liposomes on the hair growth stimulation and its toxicological aspects.


Mesocricetus auratus were randomly divided into three groups. Control group was treated with Aristoflex® gel, 1% group with the same gel but added 1% VEGF and 3% group with 3% VEGF. Biochemical, hematological and histological analyses were done.


At the end of the experiment (15th day of VEGF treatment) efficacy was determined macroscopically by hair density dermatoscopy analysis, and microscopically by hair diameter analysis. They both demonstrated that hair of the VEGF group increased faster and thicker than control. On the other hand, biochemical and hematological results had shown that VEGF was not 100% inert.


VEGF increased hair follicle area, but more studies are necessary to confirm its toxicity.

Alopecia; Experimental model; Growth factor