Human beings entirely regenerate their skin every 7 days. Cuts and wounds heal themselves and disappear from sight within a couple of weeks. Every cell within the skeleton is replaced within 7 years. This all goes to show how dynamic our cells really are. A number of medical experts have mentioned that the future of medicine lies in understanding how the body creates a single cell and the various mechanisms that are involved in renewing the cell throughout life. It is believed that once this goal is achieved, serious diseases such as Alzheimers, cancer, spinal cord injuries and diabetes can also be treated.
Medical science may have a long way to go when it comes to understanding stem cells, but the world of skin care has managed to achieve significant breakthroughs. Studies have shown the numerous benefits of adding stem cell technology into skin care products, and this has made stem cells one of the latest buzzwords in skin care. Stem cells have the amazing ability of being able to develop into different types of cells. When these cells divide, they can remain as the original stem cell or transform into another cell type, such as a skin cell.
Thus, stem cells are different from other types of cells for two simple reasons – they can renew themselves and can also mimic other cells to serve specific functions. Their regenerative properties make them extremely crucial for skin care, as they offer a new way to look at anti-aging and treating things like lines, wrinkles and other aging signs.
One of the most interesting studies on the use of stem cells in skin care was conducted by Dr. Gregory Bays Brown, a former plastic surgeon. During the course of Dr. Brown’s research, it became evidently clear that a substance known as Epidermal Growth Factor was released whenever the body suffered from wounds or injury in order to accelerate the healing process. It has been believed that these same molecules can be used to regenerate aging skin by making stem cells mimic these factors.
Studies have also shown that stem-cell production decreases due to things like pollution and the damage caused by UV rays. In the year 2008, LVMH Laboratories identified certain key ingredients which had the ability to protect the stem cells from external factors. According to experts, the power of protecting stem cells was extremely vital for maintaining the youthful appearance of the skin and boosting epidermal regeneration.
Another exciting study surrounding the anti-aging effects of stem cells derived from apples was conducted by researchers working for Mibelle Biochemistry. They first obtained human stem cells to show that a minute concentration of 0.1% of these cells could stimulate the proliferation of stem cells within the body by as much as 80%! The researchers then conducted a second experiment where they irradiated the umbilical cord stem cells with UV light. About half of the stem cells that were cultured using growth mediums ended up dying, but the stem cells that were cultured using apple extracts showed a very small decrease. This same study also included an experiment to observe the anti-wrinkle effects of stem cell potions created using apple extracts. This potion was applied on the crow’s feet area of 20 people, 2 times each day. After just two weeks, the wrinkle depth reduced by 8%. This decrease increased to 15% within 4 weeks, thereby causing a reduction in the overall signs of aging.
Better yet, stem cells haven’t just been influencing the world of skin care. The NeuralStem trial has already demonstrated that human embryonic stem cells can be transplanted into the spinal cord to help people suffering from ALS. Research on the same technique is underway to determine whether the treatment can slow the decline of health or improve functioning in the body.
Although stem cell studies have a long way to go before their exact benefits are known, researchers believe that topical applications may stimulate the growth of new stem cells, thereby keeping the skin young and healthy.