Ageing is defined as the decline and deterioration of functional properties at the cellular, tissue and organ level. The loss of functional properties yields a loss of homeostasis (tissue health) and well being with decreased adaptability to internal and external stress yielding an increased vulnerability to disease and mortality. Ageing is a breakdown in maintenance of specific cell functions and molecular pathways. There are both genetic as well as environmental factors that may affect the ageing process. For instance people who are sun bakers may have premature damage to the structural and cellular integrity of their skin versus people who are not. This is not a genetic determining factor but rather an environmental concern. 

Generally, with few exceptions, individuals are heterogenous with respect to ageing. The onset, rate at which it progresses and the extent of ageing demonstrate that the cell is the controlling feature of organ health. Functional capacity of the cell is determined as above, by genes and environment. Optimal cellular operation contribute to homeostasis and organ function. Any cell that are defective or shows senescence may be removed by apoptosis. This could trigger an inflammatory or neoplastic response. 

Frailty is a geriatric syndrome characterised by weakness, weight loss and low activity with associated adverse health outcomes. Frailty manifests as an age related biological vulnerability to stress and decreased physiological reserves (not enough cells) yielding a limited capacity to maintain homeostasis. There is a widely used frailty criteria for screening consisting of:

  • Self reported exhaustion
  • Slowed performance
  • Weakness
  • Weight loss
  • Low physical activity

The balance between apoptosis (orderly process of cellular self destruction) and senescence (response of normal cells to potentially cancer causing events) or the acceleration of either may well precipitate changes in multiple systems and ultimately frailty and late life vulnerability. 

Stem Cells used for Anti-Ageing and Frailty

By their very nature stem cells are the building blocks of our body, incorporating the foundation and the cladding. They are also the wiring, plumbing, roof and fence. Our genes and DNA are intrinsically entwined with our cells and regulate and modulate the systems in our body. As we age our physical production of cells is rate and age limited; however up to the day of our death we still have the capacity for our remaining stem cells to differentiate into the cells controlling our organs and systems. It could be described that our piggy bank of cells gets smaller cause for years and years we are removing stem cells and not replenishing. That is the very nature of why stem cell infusions are important, because discovery of these important cells enables us to grow and expand them exponentially to assist the body via a ‘top up’. It is exactly the same when a surgeon does a bone graft; they are utilising the small number of stem cells in the graft to grow and replenish a bone defect. The bone itself acts as a scaffold, the stem cells encourage the growth of blood vessels and subsequent incorporation of the graft.

There has been published a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled clinical trials of mesenchymal stem cells to ameliorate ageing frailty and published in The Journal of Gerontology November 2017. The results of this study confirmed: ‘Intravenous mesenchymal stem cells were safe in individuals with ageing frailty. Treated groups had remarkable improvements in physical performance measures and inflammatory biomarkers both of which characterise the frailty syndrome’

Summary advocate that Stem Cell infusions via autogenous fat grafting is suitable for an anti-ageing strategy. Indeed there is suggestion that stem cell infusions should start from the 4th or 5th decade to keep up with the rate limiting decreased production of stem cells as we get older. Nevertheless we would harvest the stem cells from elderly patients only if minor surgery is medically safe. We would advocate a stem cell infusion twice in 1 week and with supplemental HBOT (Hyperbaric oxygen therapy increases stem cell differentiation).

At we pride ourselves on ensuring patients know the team diagnosing and conducting their stem cell therapy. Professor Russell Vickers is the lead specialist, working within a team of specialist surgeons and doctors.

Important questions that patients should ask of any treating clinicians and facility:

  • Are my treating doctors specialist surgeons/doctors and stem cell experts?
  • How many publications and research based studies have they published in peer reviewed journals?
  • Can they augment stem cell therapy with the known benefits of adjunctive therapy? is Europes premier stem cell organisation guided by evidence based medicine and clinical research.

Our founding director, Professor Russell Vickers PhD, MDsc, M Med, MA, FFPM (ANZCA) is an Australian and New Zealand board registered surgeon with over 100 publications, books and thousands of invited lectures and presentations on stem cells, pain, peptide synthesis and biochemistry. Professor Vickers is the leader of a family team of surgeons assisting him including Dr Peter Vickers, MD, FRCS (Edinburgh), FRACDS, Dr Richard Vickers, MD, FRCS (England, Glasgow, Ireland), FRACDS (OMS) and Dr Jessica Vickers, MD, MCOM, BA/BN as co-ordinator.

This medical summary has been written by Professor Vickers and his family team of specialist consultants.

It has been written by medically qualified writers.

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