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Stem Cell Res Ther. 2014 Dec 17;5(6):138. doi: 10.1186/scrt528.

New fat-derived products for treating skin-induced lesions of scleroderma in nude mice.



Scleroderma is characterized by cutaneous manifestations that mainly affect the hands, arms and face. As of today, there is no treatment for fibrotic skin lesions of scleroderma. Previously we generated and validated a model of scleroderma-like skin sclerosis in nude mice, appropriate to inject human derived products. We showed that the subcutaneous injection of micro-fat (MF), purified and injected using small caliber cannulas, have anti-fibrotic and pro-angiogenic effects and appears more suitable for the treatment of skin lesions of scleroderma compared to the gold standard (Coleman's technique or macro-fat). Here we compared the long-term efficacy of micro-fat "enriched" with other therapeutic products including the stromal vascular fraction (SVF) of fat and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) from blood in our murine model of scleroderma.


We used 72 nude mice in this study. We formed six experimental groups: Macro-fat, MF, SVF, PRP, MF + SVF, MF + PRP. This project has three phases: i) Induction of skin sclerosis by daily subcutaneous injections of bleomycin (BLM) for 4 weeks in nude mice; ii) Purification and injection of the different cell therapy products; iii) Histological analyses done 8 weeks post-injections.


MF + SVF and MF + PRP significantly reversed dermal and epidermal sclerosis (P <0.01). Macro-fat, SVF, PRP only corrected the dermal sclerosis (P <0.05). Epidermal sclerosis was reduced in treatments containing MF (P <0.01). MF was more stable. Products containing the SVF were associated with a significant increase of the local vascularization (P <0.01).


All tested substances were effective in treating skin-induced lesions of scleroderma with different levels of fibrosis and vascular improvement; MF derived products are more stable and SVF demonstrated better pro-angiogenic effects. The observed efficacy of this combination of products in the animal model provides a rationale for potential clinical applications to treat human disease.

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