Science Challenge Result # 3 - What is your hair made of?

in #steemstem4 years ago

This is something that we do not think about normally but it is an intriguing part of our body. We know that our hair is a form of protein but yet it is a solid form of it. While I was doing my Science classes, I always though that protein was only in liquid form. Want to know more about your hair? Why not stick till the end :)

(Credit: here)

Definition of hair

From the dictionary, we get 3 definitions of our hair:

  1. any of the numerous fine, usually cylindrical, keratinous filaments growing from the skin of humans and animals; a pilus.
  2. an aggregate of such filaments, as that covering the human head or forming the coat of most mammals.
  3. a similar fine, filamentous outgrowth from the body of insects,spiders, etc.

Since it is such a common feature of humans and mammals, we take it for granted but there is a specific word that they use and it is called keratinous filaments which comes from the protein Keratin. We will talk more about it later.

Our hair take their birth in the follicles of our body where there is a bulb which is formed which contains the roots. Since the roots grow to go beyond our skin in our bloodstream, this is where they get the nutrients to keep growing.

(Source: here)

The protein

Our hair, no kidding apart, is a form of protein. The protein is called Keratin. It is composed of basic elements like Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen and Sulphur. There are many materials that contain all those elements but what makes it special is the arrangement of the atoms of those elements.

(Credit: here)

The specific arrangement gives rise to the properties of our hair and the filament like structure. It is fascinating that our simple hair is so complex. I wonder how nature arranged itself in the first place to produce such a compound!

The winners 

The right answer for the question “What is Aluminium Oxide?” is A - It is the protective layer formed on Aluminium metal.

(Credit: here

The post payout is in some 12 hours but we already have the winners (24 in total): 

@ir3k , @ailenepm ,  @nihalmaz , @royaleagle ,  @neokuduk ,  @rayne122 , @mhshadhin , @hawk399 , @sunnyali , @artibeus , @alxmuh , @lavanyalakshman , @dexterdev , @drishitmitra , @aneninen , @cobmaximus , @jahangirwifii , @sky777 , @eugheny.borodin , @mzee , @aamirijaz , @mental-extract , @raynejr122 , @sanoza 

Congratulations to all the winners!!!

The origin of hair

As a scientist or a curious one, we sometimes wonder about the origin of things. If we try to get to the origin of the story of hair, we need to start with fur. Before mammals existed, there were only reptiles roaming the earth.

The oldest fossil record of an animal having hair is 165 million years. The fossil was found well preserved in China and this is how we definitely know that fur was a common feature during that period.

What are preserved in fossil records is mostly bones and from that we try to make out what the animal might have looked like. But in the case of the fossil in China, there was fur on the dinosaur and atleast we know that during this time it was existing. Fur may even be older but this is how far we got till now. 

To add a little of my own opinion to the subject, our ancestors had a lot of hair/fur since they were there during the last ice age along with the Mammoth. In order to keep warm, fur was an essential feature and as the ice age passed, so did the fur on the body. As the body became more naked, we found ourselves nude and the keep up with the cold winters, we wrapped ourselves with some other animal's skin to keep us warm.

This all kick started to make what we have today as modern clothing. This may only be fiction but it does make a lot of sense. But when we think about it, in the next ice age, will we be growing a lot of hair to cover our body so as to fight the cold? The barber business will be blooming during that time!

Why do our hair die?

This is a really mysterious and unknown answer as we dig deep into the subject. The answer is mostly unknown as we do not yet know what our hair feed on. Scientist has 2 main proposals, namely, hereditary hair loss and loss due to the lack of the required proteins. Since the roots of our hair feed directly from the blood in our body, if the required nutrients are not there, it will simply fall out.

In many ways, for hair, our skin is like the soil. If the soil is arid, hair cannot grow. If afterwards the right nutrients are present, maybe the seeds are no more present to make the hair grow back again. We think that keeping us clean is going to help us but more than often, science has proved us wrong.

People who live in dirty conditions, when they get to a cleaner part of the world, they are more resistant to diseases as their bodies' anti-bodies are more resistant. Our digestive system is made up of viruses and many bacteria and they help us digest our food and keep us healthy. Is being clean to the world mean that we are keeping our body in the right condition? What if cleaning our hair the way we do is destroying it altogether? Maybe like plants' roots, the roots of our hair is able to absorb the water and let go of the soap molecules but in the end, it does affect the growth and health due to the stain.

Everything in this life is unclear without a clear definite answer but we make do with what we have. The deeper we try to go in a subject, the deeper we find the mystery that resides. A simple thing as our hair, scientist have not been able to solve all of its problem.


Congratulations to all the winners. Your rewards will be sent to you in some 12 hours when the post will payout. 

The next science quiz will be out tomorrow in some 12 hours so stay tuned if you want to participate in the lazy Saturday contest. 

Feeling enlightened and happy to find out about Aluminium? Why not play the Steemit Lotto Game on this post to change your mind: Steemit Lotto Weekly # 15 - Minimum Pot Size 54 STEEM!!!!

Good luck to everyone  ? 

Don't forget to check if you are a winner every Saturday and Sunday at around 19 00 (GMT)

(adatpted from 3D Lines Steemit Logo Reveal)


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Hey,i am a winner,thankyou very much

When we give another contest question

Thx, man! Good luck!

Thanks for your hair competition, I am winner too. Most amazing thing was that I did know much about hairs and their problems of hair losing. I have read many articles and than know most of the causes due to fungal problems which lead our hairs to damage so badly. I want to say thanks if you did not put this up I did not able to do little research and able to find healthy solutions. Thanks again

You are great Thanks for your support