Biomarker Collection Protocols - Hair


Cortisol and stress steroids have been successfully measured in hair samples.  However, understanding the relationship between these types of assays and those traditionally done in blood and saliva is still underway. 

1. Gather the supplies listed below:

2. Prepare the area you will be using:

3. At the back of the head, collect a top layer of hair and secure it out of the way with the hair clips.

4. Approximately 2 cm below the cranial bone, use the comb to separate 2-3 strands of hair.  Overall diameter of strands should be about half of a pencil.

5. Thread the hair strands through the loop of the string.  Tighten the loop.

6. Cut the hair close to the scalp, between the tightened string and the scalp.  This allows the string to remain around the sample of hair once it is cut.

7. Place the strands of hair on the foil in the center, leaving the string on the sample.  Using a permanent marker, mark on the foil which end of the sample was the end cut (and closest to the scalp).  If the hair sample is too long for the foil, the strands can be trimmed at the end that was farthest from the scalp.

9. Place the paper clip over the foil at the scalp end of the sample.

10. Place the participant label on the foil.  Place the foil label into a Ziploc bag.

11. Store the sample in a dark, dry location until shipping.




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