Autologous cultured fibroblasts: a protein repair system

Ann Plast Surg. 2000 May;44(5):536-42. doi: 10.1097/00000637-200044050-00013.


Cultured autologous fibroblasts create a living injectable system that has been utilized effectively to treat rhytids, depressed scars, subcutaneous atrophy, acne irregularities, and laser wounds. Autologous cultured fibroblasts (Isolagen) as a protein repair system is produced from a 3-mm cutaneous punch biopsy. Skin biopsies are initiated in an in vitro tissue culture system. The cells are expanded to produce large quantities of fibroblasts and extracellular matrix totaling 1.0 to 1.5 ml. This cellular system is injected into the patient after 8 weeks of cellular expansion. Each area of treatment is injected once every 2 weeks for three injections. A total of 1,450 patients in the United States and Europe have been treated at designated centers. A total of 4,800 injections were given. At the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and Hackensack University Medical Center, 94 patients were treated from 1995 through 1999. Long-term follow-up ranged from 36 to 48 months. A subjective patient satisfaction survey showed 92% of the patients were satisfied with the grade of correction. A long-term follow-up survey revealed continuing improvement beyond the initial correction in 70% of patients. Results from other designated centers correlated with the authors' findings. Cultured autologous fibroblasts (Isolagen) appears to be a living, cellular, dynamic filler system capable of immediate correction and continued repair of dermal and superficial subcutaneous deficiencies.

MeSH terms

  • Cells, Cultured
  • Face / surgery*
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts / transplantation*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Plastic Surgery Procedures*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Transplantation, Autologous
  • Treatment Outcome