President Obama ordered federal agencies, such as the FDA, to search their books and strike any overburdensome regulations. In June, the FDA quietly posted a request for comments to any existing regulations that are burdensome or outdated by technology. We passed the link on to Professor Mary Chirba who then submitted comments to the FDA regarding autologous stem cell therapies. She has graciously given us permission to post her comments here on our blog.
Fat grafting, also known as fat transfers or fat injections, is a plastic surgery procedure which removes fat from unwanted areas of your body, carefully processes the fat, and then reinjects your own adipose fat tissue where more volume is desired. Fat injections can help rejuvenate your face, your buttocks, your hands, or your breasts. Fat injections are also being used in breast reconstruction surgery. Fat grafting will restore volume to the breast and can be performed with or without an implant. Lately we have seen some plastic surgery blogs expressing concern regarding how fat injections to the breast affect mammograms. We feel that both sides of the story are not being told, so we would like to address that here.
We attended Robin Young’s 6th annual Stem Cell Summit which was held this year on March 1st in New York City. Also in attendance were scores of public and private stem cell companies. Presentations included 21 adult stem cell companies, 3 embryonic companies, 7 device/instrumentation companies, and a panel of medical experts discussing Spinal Cord Injury. Each company gave a 10 to 15 minute presentation but we most enjoyed Dr. Arnold Caplan’s keynote address. Not only is he well known in academic circles, but he is no stranger to the biotech financial community, as he was the founder of Osiris Therapeutics (Nasdaq: OSIR), a publicly traded cell therapy company. Here are some highlights we took away from Caplan’s keynote speech entitled, The State of MSCs in 2011. If you are interested in stem cells from adipose tissue, you don’t want to miss this!
The Stem Cell Niche Stem cells usually exist in a low grade resting state in a controlled environment called a niche. The niche contains mesenchymal stem cells, also known as MSCs. The mesenchymal stem cell niche is usually located in the blood vessel wall itself. The status quo for a niche is not full blown stem cell activity, but a level of activity finely attuned to its surroundings. These cells like to keep a stable environment (on the vessels) within the niche. They will only respond in a very specific way, to certain kinds of stimuli. In a chronic disease state such as scar tissue or aged skin, the stem cells present in that tissue are responding in many small and measured ways to whatever is happening in the tissue. Stem Cells are trying to maintain balanced conditions, this is called homeostasis. There are no big changes, just a low-grade adaptation to aging or scar process. This is why the stem cells in the local tissue are not doing what you would like them to do.
2010 ushered in the new promising decade for the use of adipose stem cells. Stem cells from your own autologous fat, also known as adipose stem cells, have the power to rejuvenate tissue, heal wounds, and cure diseases. Taking the pulse at the various Stem Cell conferences around the country in 2010, we found that more clinical researchers are gravitating to adipose tissue as a source of stem cells. Bone marrow has historically been the default source of adult stem cells for researchers. Likewise, the volume of peer reviewed publications and research papers attesting to fat as an abundant source of stem cells has seen a tremendous increase in the past year. So what’s in store for 2011? Fat is phat again!
New evidence points to an improvement in vascularity and blood flow when stem cells are more concentrated in the fat to be transplanted. For therapeutic approaches, reproducible protocols of adipose-derived stem cells isolation and a large amount of cells are necessary, in order to respond to the increasing demand. Therefore, to practically understand what happens when adipose tissue is manipulated in the operating room, we studied the most common methods of fat processing employed by most plastic surgeons, in order to see which method yields the highest quantity of stem cells.
At the 2010 IFATS conference in Dallas, Dr. Sydney Coleman concluded that the high density fractions of lipoaspirate are superior to the low density fractions in terms of fat survival because they have a higher percentage of stem cells. What does this mean for fat grafting patients?
Highlights from the 2010 ASPS plastic surgery hot topics panel We recently attended the annual ASPS National Plastic Surgery Meeting in Toronto. We particularly enjoyed the ‘Hot topics’ panel session and have written an analysis of the notable presentations on Adipose Stem Cells by Dr. Robert Singer and Dr. Peter Rubin.
A recent study published by a team from University of Pittsburgh Medical School is encouraging for researchers, clinicians, and medical device makers who are developing adipose stem cell treatments for breast reconstruction. Learn about the history of fat grafting and the safety conclusions of the Pittsburgh study.
Fat grafts to the face are a great way to rejuvenate your face. As you age, your dermis thins, and your face will sag.You may lose volume in your cheeks and under your eyes. These areas appear to be hollow or not as defined as they were when you were younger. Additionally, some people have areas of their face lacking volume no matter what their age. Fat grafts will naturally fill those areas to restore your youthful appearance. Additionally, your own adipose fat contains adults stem cells. Adult stem cells have regenerative properties that can increase blood supply to your tissue and skin to make you look younger.
Find out why Dr. Rodriguez, a Yale trained Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, thinks fat grafting is a better technique for facial rejuvenation than laser resurfacing. Fat grafts have a population of naturally occurring adult stem cells which rejuvenate the ageing face.
Adipose tissue has a higher population of stem cells than bone marrow. Enough said. The tissue which has the highest population wins. Read more about this in Dr. Rodriguez’s CosmeticSurg blog.
The year 2010 ushers in a new decade where science , beauty, and your own fat make a marriage that promises to deliver one of the most disruptive medical technologies of the century. Dr. Ricardo Rodriguez, a Yale trained Plastic Surgeon believes that stem cells from your own fat will lead the cosmetic surgery trends.
Fat injections are long lasting if done correctly. That is my position and I stand by it! If you frequent various plastic surgery blogs, there is a big difference in the types of techniques that surgeons are using. Thus, there is a wide variation in their results, so many patients think that fat injections do not last. Fat injections are permanent if the following is done:
- correct technique of extraction and processing
- proper post surgical protocol for patient.
An emerging alternative for breast reconstruction after lumpectomy with radiation is fat grafting to the breast. Fat grafting has been successfully performed for years, but the full healing powers of your own fat is a new frontier in Plastic Surgery. Read Dr. Rodriguez’s CosmeticSurg blog to find out more.