Stem, regenerative cells shows feasibility as SUI treatment

October 29, 2009

Stem and regenerative cells from autologous fat tissue can be safely used to treat stress urinary incontinence, according to findings from a small study by Japanese researchers.

Stem and regenerative cells from autologous fat tissue can be safely used to treat stress urinary incontinence, according to findings from a small study by Japanese researchers.

In the pilot study of five men who had stress incontinence resulting from prior radical prostatectomy, adipose-derived stem and regenerative cells (ADRCs) were delivered via two distinct formulations. First, they were injected directly into the sphincter with the goal of improving muscle contraction. Second, ADRCs were combined with the patient’s own fat tissue to create a cell-enriched bulking agent with the goal to improve closure upon sphincter contraction. Cells were processed using the Celution 800 System (Cytori Therapeutics, Inc., San Diego) during the operative procedure.

The patients underwent follow-up examinations at 2, 4, 8, and 12 weeks and were assessed on the basis of continence, intraurethral and leak point pressures, quality of life, and a variety of imaging studies.

At 12 weeks following treatment, three of five patients showed improvement in leakage, urethral closure, and quality of life assessment, reported researchers led by Momokazu Gotoh, MD, PhD, and Tokunori Yamamoto, MD, PhD, of Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya. These patients were diagnosed as having severe incontinence before treatment. Two of the five patients did not show improvement in these measures and were diagnosed as having very severe incontinence.

"We confirmed that the transplanted cells stimulate new blood supply in the treated area, stabilize the transplanted tissue over time, and increase the urethral pressure in the majority of patients treated," Dr. Yamamoto said. "These early findings give hope to millions of patients suffering from untreatable incontinence and the resulting impact on their quality of life. Based on these results, we look forward to expanding the study to a larger population of patients."

Study findings were presented at the International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics and Science annual meeting in Daegu, Korea.