Treatment Center

What is a Stem Cell?

What Is a Stem Cell?

What is a Stem Cell?A stem cell is basically a special cell that can uniquely do two functions: replicate and differentiate.

This means the cell can not only multiply and make copies of itself, but it can also differentiate or turn into various other tissue types. There are several kinds of stem cells.

Most people have heard about “embryonic stem cells” – at the Miami Stem Cell Treatment Center we do NOT use embryonic stem cells. These are cells from the embryonic stage of human development – from human babies or human fetuses – and are “pluripotent” because they have yet to differentiate and can change into any body part. Because they are taken from unborn embryos, there has been considerable moral and ethical controversy surrounding their use. Furthermore, while they have shown promise in some areas of medicine, they have also been associated with occasional tumor (teratoma) formation. Stem cell research is being conducted by several companies, most of them outside the United States, to isolate particular lines of embryonic cells for future use.

At the Miami Stem Cell Treatment Center we do NOT use embryonic stem cells.

Adult Stem Cells…

What is a Stem Cell?Another kind of stem cells are adult stem cells, which reside in different tissues in the body.

In recent years, much of the adult stem cell research has been done on bone marrow-derived stem cells. Also known as “mesenchymal stem cells” because they come from the mesodermal areas of the body.  These mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can differentiate into mesodermal cell types such as bone, cartilage, fat, connective tissue, blood vessels, muscles, and nerves. Because these stem cells are low in numbers, decrease with age, and may be severely compromised by the use of immunosuppressive medications, age, and immunosuppressive diseases, they are usually cultured after extraction in order to multiply their numbers for therapeutic use.

At the Miami Stem Cell Treatment Center we do NOT use bone marrow stem cells which requires “culturing” or “growing” or “multiplying” in order to be used for therapeutic use. We do not use bone marrow stem cells – we use only Adult Autologous Adipose-derived Stem Cells (ADSC’s).

…From Your Own Fat  (Adipose Stem Cells)

What is a Stem Cell?As it turns out, adipose tissue (fat) is loaded with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).

In fact, fat has hundreds, if not thousands of times MORE stem cells than bone marrow.

Most of us have adequate stores of fat, which is relatively easy to extract through a mini-liposuction procedure. At the Miami Stem Cell Treatment Center, we have technology that allows us to separate large quantities of stem cells from fat, so there is NO need to culture the cells over a period of days. Therefore, your own stem cells can be used IMMEDIATELY – and without risk of Infection or Rejection!

Fat-derived adult stem cells are known as “progenitor” cells. This means they remain dormant (do nothing) until they are signaled by tissue damage. That’s when they go to work. They hone in on areas of injury or degeneration and turn on the healing process. They may simply change into the cell type the damaged area needs for repair. They also appear to reduce inflammation and signal growth factors and other mechanisms of tissue regeneration. Multiple animal models and a plethora of human evidence demonstrates significant regenerative effects of fat-derived adult stem cells.

At the Miami Stem Cell Treatment Center we only use Adult Autologous Adipose-derived Stem Cells (ADSC’s).

Dr. Thomas A. Gionis, MD JD
Surgeon-in-Chief
Stem Cell Research and Treatment