The application of adipose stem cells as a therapeutic product is the result of years of research and development. In recent years, adipose stem cells (ASCs) have gained notoriety since its initial discovery in 2001 (1). Since then, the ASC has become the most popular adult stem cells due to its ease of harvest and ACS’s ability to differentiate into multiple lineages (2).
VetCell Therapeutics (VCT) has studied the use of adipose tissue in regenerative medicine and has published manuscripts on the topic. Most of the early work was focused on mouse adipose stem cells and the findings are being applied for use in veterinarian medicine.
A large area of need in veterinary medicine is the treatment of osteoarthritis, which is common in animals as they age. Routine treatment of this ailment is with anti-inflammatory drugs or with surgical procedures. Currently, homologous ACSs are being heavily studied to determine if these cells are able to treat osteoarthritis (3). The results from these studies have been promising and shows a great potential to use these cells for a wide array of ailments.
Two of VCT’s publications highlight the use of a subpopulation of ASCs which were derived from animal and human sources. These cells were isolated, expanded and differentiated into osteogenic, chondrogenic and adipogenic lineages. These cells were also placed into a wound healing model and showed improved healing abilities of the skin’s dermal layers. These cells were also used in a project with a bone scaffolding unit. In an animal model, the transplanted cells mixed with the bone scaffold material differentiated into chondrogenic type cells and started to develop into mature chondrocytes.
Currently, VCT is working on projects aimed at using adipose tissue as a source material to treat osteoarthritis. Our data, along with other publications (4), suggest that adipose tissue may be a reliable source for cells that can be used to treat bone and cartilage conditions as well as other indications (5, 6). The need for an efficient treatment is desired for pets diagnosed with arthritis or other osteogenic conditions.
The scientific R&D projects are led by a veterinarian scientist, whom is well respected in the industry and with an impressive publication history. Also part of the team is a consulting veterinarian with a background in stem cell research who focuses on generating clinical treatments with these cells. The team is a group of research specialists who all have training in basic research, with a focus on regenerative medicine. The goal is to strive for highly effective products that are backed by research geared towards improving the lives of our beloved companions.
VetCell Therapeutics has a number of patents issued in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Australia. The company also has a number of filed patents focused on innovative use of stem cells in regenerative medicine. One of the many goals has been to develop intellectual property to protect the concepts of cell-based therapies and to strengthen the ability for success with cell based treatments.
1- Zuk P., Zhu M., Mizuno H., et al., Tissue Engineering, vol. 7, no. 2, pp 211–228, 2001
2- Zuk P., ISRN Stem Cells Volume 2013 Article ID 713959
3- Guercio A., Di Marco P., Casella S., et al, Cell Biology Int, vol 36, (2), pp 189–194, 2012
4- Lindroos B, Suuronen R, Miettinen S., Stem Cell Rev. Jun 7, (2) pp 269-91, 2011
5- Lin F., Kidney International vol 82, pp 731–733, 2012
6- Ha S., Ahn S., Kim S., et al., J Biomed Opt. vol 19(5), 2014
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