Body Fat Can Be Harvested for Future Stem Cell Use
Body fat is often used for many cosmetic procedures, such as breast and butt enhancements, as well as a dermal filler to smooth wrinkles and plump the skin. Now, scientists have determined that body fat, medically termed “adipose tissue,” also has the potential to treat a variety of diseases. Experts say adipose tissue is an excellent source of stem cells, which can be used for cell-based therapies and remedying diseases, including arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, and potentially even HIV/AIDS in the future.
Stem cells have the unique ability to develop into a wide range of cell types and are part of an internal repair system in the body’s tissues. As stem cells renew themselves through cell division, each new cell has the capacity to either remain a stem cell or to develop into a cell with a specialized function. If there are worn out or damaged tissues, stem cells can divide to regenerate the tissues with healthy cells. Numerous studies have been conducted to determine the specific characteristics of these cells, and scientists have successfully produced knee cartilage, heart muscles, bladders, tracheas, and blood vessels using the patients’ own stem cells. More research is needed to identify exactly how and why the stem cells develop into differentiated cells before they can be used in common practice. Once scientists determine how to induce stem cells to generate specialized cell types and ‘grow’ tissues more accurately, stem cells can be used for regenerative medicine to repair the damaged or destroyed cell populations associated with acute and degenerative diseases.
Fat tissue is an affluent source of mesenchymal stem cells, with 500 times more of these stem cells compared to some other tissues, such as bone marrow. Liposuction, a minimally invasive procedure, has made fat tissue easily accessible, and it is the most popular cosmetic procedure being requested at Dr. Gabriel Chiu’s plastic surgery center. While gaining a slimmer and more attractive appearance, patients at Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery, Inc. can also have stem cells harvested from their fat tissue for cryogenic storage. Rather than disposing of these cells, they will be stored at very low temperatures in order to preserve them until science has developed a way to use them, if necessary, to treat a disease in the patient. Patients undergoing other procedures, such as a tummy tuck, breast reduction, or thigh lift, can also have their adipose tissue collected for stem cell storage.
If you are interested in learning more about stem cell harvesting or any cosmetic procedure, please read our recent press release or call 310-888-8087 to schedule a consultation with our Beverly Hills board certified surgeon, Dr. Gabriel Chiu. Dr. Chiu has performed thousands of surgeries and is dedicated to providing his patients with safe and effective procedures.