French hair and beauty firm L’Oréal has collaborated with bioprinting firm Poietis to work on a technique, which uses 3D printing to create new follicles for hair growth.

Poietis’s 3D bio-printing technology makes use of laser beams to layer drops of organic material. The beam is shot at a cartridge containing cells taken from alopecia patients following hair surgery.

"The next step is, will it be possible to implant? This is the holy grail."

This then transfers the cells to a substrate, which contains nutrients that aid their growth. The produced tissue is then matured for three weeks and used for tests.

L’Oreal’s research and innovation division director Jose Cotovio was quoted by BBC as saying: “Hair loss is very emotional for some people and very distressing. If we succeed in identifying some ingredients that can fight this, it will be a huge revolution.

“The next step is, will it be possible to implant? This is the holy grail.”

Poietis' general manager Bruno Brisson was quoted by Thesun.co.uk as saying: “Our partnership with L’Oreal should lead to the development of innovative applications in terms of tissue engineering.”