Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania have developed a system to collect and use stem cells from fat for use in anti-aging treatments.
Adult stem cells play a critical role in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis and the prevention of aging. Scientists have long studied the regenerative potential of stem cells in anti-aging treatment.
The study found that stem cells collected directly from human fat, known as adipose-derived stem cells, or ASCs, make more proteins than originally thought and have the ability to replicate and maintain their stability. The research showed that ASCs are more stable than age-matched fibroblasts.
"Our study shows these cells are very robust, even when they are collected from older patients," Dr. Ivona Percec, director of Basic Science Research in the Center for Human Appearance and the lead author of the study, said in a press release. "It also shows these cells can be potentially used safely in the future, because they require minimal manipulation and maintenance."
Percec and her team found that ASCs are more stable than other stem cells, which could lead to new treatments and therapies of aging-related diseases.
"Unlike other adult human stem cells, the rate at which these ASCs multiply stays consistent with age," Percec said. "That means these cells could be far more stable and helpful as we continue to study natural aging."
Currently, ASCs are not approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The study was published in the journal Stem Cells.