Bone and muscle（Chronic rheumatoid arthritis, tendon myelitis）
For patients suffering from rheumatic diseases and allergic diseases such as atopic dermatitis and bronchial asthma. Regenerative medicine provided by a specialist in autoimmune diseases.
Juntendo University Medical School Juntendo Clinic, The Department of Internal Medicine for Collagen Diseases Board Certified Rheumatologist and Supervising Doctor, Japan College of Rheumatology Representative Director and President of KYB Group, Medical Doctor
Dr. Toshiyuki Kaneko
Many people may think that stem cell therapy will be provided for an anti-aging or cosmetic treatment. At our clinic, stem cell therapy is available for people undergoing treatment for autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and allergic diseases such as atopic dermatitis. Patients are given an intravenous infusion of adipose-derived stem cells. This treatment reduces inflammation caused by autoimmune abnormalities, reduces the use of existing therapeutic drugs such as steroids and immunosuppressive drugs, reduces side effects such as liver dysfunction and infection risk, and improves quality of life.
Challenging issues in the Treatment of Autoimmune Diseases
Autoimmune diseases are those in which the immune system recognizes the body’s own cells and tissues as foreign and attacks them, causing inflammation and fibrosis in various parts of the body. Its treatment involves the use of steroids and immunosuppressive drugs that strongly suppress inflammation and immunity. However, steroids have side effects such as increased susceptibility to diabetes, osteoporosis, and cataracts, weight gain, and a flattened face. A major challenge in the treatment of autoimmune diseases is “how to reduce the use of these drugs and reduce the physical burden on the patient while continuing treatment.
Mechanism of treatment using autologous adipose-derived stem cells
Flow of Treatment：
①Harvest fat from the patient’s abdomen through liposuction.
②Extract stem cells from fat and culture them to the required cell count
③Administer stem cells to patients by intravenous (IV) infusion (Possible about 2 months after fat harvesting)
Until now, mesenchymal stem cells, which have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties for use to treat autoimmune diseases are harvested from bone marrow and subcutaneous fat. However, this method requires a large needle to be inserted into the bone marrow, which places a heavy physical burden on the patient. In comparison, new method of treatment enables to extract a larger amount of subcutaneous fat easily from the abdomen. At clinics referred by EAJ, fat harvesting is performed by plastic surgeons with extensive experience in liposuction procedures, making the procedure safer.
How adipose-derived stem cells work
When adipose-derived stem cells are administered, the stem cells secrete immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory agents. Immunosuppressive agents suppress the excessive immune system’s ability to attack itself. In addition, it is expected that growth agents with anti-inflammatory properties act around wounded tissue to repair tissue and reduce fibrosis.
There are risks that the administration of immunosuppressive drugs and steroids weakens the immune system and makes the patient more susceptible to infection. Adipose-derived stem cells, on the other hand, suppress inflammation when the immune system is overactive, but promote inflammation when the immune system is not activated, thus offering the advantage of a lower risk of developing infection or cancer. In addition, the treatment is extremely safe because the patient’s own adipose-derived stem cells are administered.
Specialists in autoimmune diseases provide treatment
The clinics that EAJ will introduce for a patient can refer the patient to a university hospital in Tokyo (Juntendo University Hospital Juntendo Clinic) if he/she wishes. The clinic is not primarily an anti-aging or cosmetic clinic, but a disease specialist will manage your treatment so that a patient can be rest assured. Adipose-derived stem cell therapy has a lower risk of side effects than the administration of immunosuppressive drugs or steroids, and is very safe because of the administration of the patient’s own adipose-derived stem cells. Please contact EAJ if you, a foreign patient, wishes to have examinations and treatment in Japan.