We are constantly pushing
the envelope to come up with methods to improve our results clinically. We
think that our new cytokine formula may be such a game changer. Our new formula
makes use of Velvet Deer Antler. But the formula is much different from those
formulas out there both in strength and the formula itself. It is a propriety
The above illustration
represents the growing portion of the antler. Deer Antler Velvet has been used
in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years but has recently gained
popularity in Western medicine. Deer antler can enhance immune system function,
improving athletic performance, increasing muscle recovery, enhance sexual
function, improve disease recovery, enhance cardiovascular function, and a host
of other conditions.
Deer Antler Velvet covers the growing bone and
cartilage that develops into deer antlers. The
growing antler contains a number of necessary cells, including fibroblasts,
chondroblasts, chondrocytes and osteocytes. The tips of the antlers begin as
undifferentiated mesenchymal stem cells which are transformed into cartilage.
Later, the cartilage is turned to bone, due to the effects of testosterone.
Deer antler velvet is antler that is still in its cartilaginous stage.
One of the problems with Velvet Deer Antler is the purity and
concentration of the product. Our antler product is sourced from a very
reliable source. Typically, there is a concentration of 1500 mg of velvet
extract per bottle. Honestly, that will have some effects but it is not exactly
what we are looking for. We have sourced a concentration of 4500 mg of Velvet
Deer Antler per bottle. This concentration would not be legal for any
professional athlete and thus we would not use it on them. Typically, these
higher concentrations will help balance hormones and promote tissue repair. In
addition to this we have actually added certain supplements to this very potent
formula. These supplements will increase stem cell efficiency and output from
the bone marrow. This combination is totally unique to our practice and network
and it is proprietary in nature.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN COMPONENTS OF VELVET
The above diagram gives some idea of the many benefits of deer extract. An
important concept that is a common theme of many research papers is that the
combination of all components of velvet antler provides a synergistic effect
that is greater than the total effect that would be achieved by the separate
use of each of its individual constituents. That means that if velvet antler is
broken down into its constituents that are used separately, their combined
effect is significantly less than the effect realized when the nutrients are
provided in the naturally combined form of velvet antler. In summary, the
effect of the complete product is greater than the summed effect of all
Let us take a better look at exactly what is found
in the antler products. Most of the antler product consists of protein. The active ingredients include collagen, lipids,
glycosaminoglycans, minerals, and various growth factors. We will take a look at the major subgroups of
components. The first component to take a look at are the glycosaminoglycans
Glycosaminoglycans are complex carbohydrates. Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), have widespread functions
within the body. GAGs play a critical role in Regenerative Medicine. They play
a crucial role in the cell signaling
process, including regulation of cell
growth, proliferation, promotion of cell adhesion,
anticoagulation, and wound repair. They are an integral component of what is
called the extracellular matrix. The extracellular
matrix (ECM) is the non-cellular component
present within all tissues and organs, and provides not only essential physical
scaffolding for the cellular constituents but also initiates crucial
biochemical and biomechanical cues that are required for tissue morphogenesis,
differentiation and homeostasis.
Research has shown GAG’s exist in velvet antler in
several forms including:
– a carbohydrate that helps protect and rebuild degenerating cartilage and
is regarded as a potent anti-inflammatory agent
are compounds involved with growth and metabolism of cells and with memory
– is a component of Chondroitin Sulphate and is a major component of
cartilage and synovial fluid
Hyaluronic acid – a
substance that binds cartilage cells together and lubricates joints. It
also acts as a signaling molecule in many biological processes.
– the major structural lipid of most cell membranes
Here is a good illustration of the Extra
Cellular Matrix. It is the substance between the cells.
Antlers grow by endochondral
ossification, the same way that long bones do. A major non-collagenous protein,
proteoglycan, a protein substituted with glycosaminoglycan chains, occurs in
the cartilaginous tissue of antler. While its use in the antler is not
understood, it has been shown that proteoglycan in cartilage, also called
aggrecan, regulates differentiation of chondrocytes and may control calcium
concentration in the growth plates where endochondral ossification occurs. This
may have important implications when we are treating joints with regenerative
More importantly, the next two illustration
shows the ramifications of the Extra Cellular Matrix and repair of various
tissues. We can see why enhancing the Extra Cellular Matrix is so important in
Regenerative Medicine. We can see that these represent the pillars of
regenerative cell therapy. There are few if any other products which have these
effects on the extracellular matrix. This is certainly a huge benefit that
comes with the Velvet Deer Antler product.
The Glycosaminoglycans have a hand in all of
the above repair processes. Most products are only addressing the cellular
portions of repair while the antler products are more comprehensive in their
The next illustration shows how the Glycosaminoglycans
are involved in the new field of tissue engineering. In the case of tissue
engineering we call the synthetic ECM a scaffold.
GROWTH FACTORS: THE CLONES OF WHAT STEM CELLS
When we look velvet antler growth factors we
see a list of who’s who in the growth factor universe. Growth
factors, which are generally considered as a
subset of cytokines, refer to the diffusible signaling proteins that stimulate
cell growth, differentiation,
survival, inflammation, and tissue repair. The major growth factors which are
found in deer antler include Insulin Like growth factors (IGF-1), Bone
morphogenetic growth factors (BMPs), Transforming growth factor family (TGF),
Fibroblast growth factor (FGF), Platelet derived growth factor (PDGF), Vascular
endothelial growth factor (VEGF), Epidermal growth factor (EGF), Interleukins,
and a variety of other factors. When looking at the various growth factors we
realize that this appears to be similar to what is found in a Platelet Rich Plasma
(PRP) product, and for that matter stem cells themselves release. The following
shows some of the major growth factors found in the antler product.
Another aspect of deer antler
deals with its Amino acid contents. Remember that amino acids are natures
building blocks. Amino acids, often referred to
as the building blocks of proteins, are compounds that play many critical roles
in your body. They’re needed for vital processes like the building of proteins
and synthesis of hormones and neurotransmitters. These are broken down to
essential and non-essential amino acids. Another type of amino acid is the free form amino acid. These amino acids aren't joined together with any
other amino acids in a protein 'string'. This allows the
individual amino acids to be instantly absorbed and used by the body without
all the growth factors, the most consequential might be IGF-1. IGF-1 is a
banned substance in the world of professional sports. The precursor of IGF-1 is
Human Growth Hormone (HGH). IGF-1 is actually the active form of HGH. It is
considered performance enhancing. In the smaller doses this is typically not an
issue but in the higher doses we are using this is a problem and across the
board we will not give this formula to any athlete in the high school, college,
or the professional sports arena. Putting this aside, why do we like IGF-1? We
can see some of the benefits below.
more importantly, we need to look at IGF-1 on the basis of cell biology. IGF-1 has been shown
to enhance the migratory response of stem cells. We must realize that the IGF-1
supplied by deer antler is a natural form. It seems to be safer than taking the
synthetic anabolic agents which can have disastrous consequences to one’s health.
The following diagram is somewhat complicated but we see the importance of
IGF-1. It will interact with the stem cell and cause the cell to go on to
repair tissue or differentiate into that tissue.
and the other growth factors can also result in a number of other health
benefits. These extra health benefits may include preservation of a person’s
muscle mass, improving the functioning of the immune system, increasing bone
density thus helping to improve Osteoporosis, a valid treatment for
fibromyalgia conditions, and lastly it may help in weight loss. The bottom line
is that these growth factors are all very important in treating damaged tissue.
This tissue could be a tendon, a joint, or muscle. Remember, with the antler we
are complimenting the growth factors that are supplied by the stem cells and
the Platelet Rich Plasma. Also, by taking these supplements on a daily basis we
continue the repair process. The one small caveat that we follow is that in those
patients who have a history of certain cancers we will typically recommend a
lower dose of the antler product. We should also keep in mind that antler
products also contain small amounts of the sex hormones testosterone and
estrogen. In the right doses these are also important for regeneration.
Another related factor found in the antler is Prostaglandins. They are substances with varying
physiologic effects, acting as a vasodepressor, smooth muscle contraction or
relaxation, inflammation and uterine stimulation. As components of deer antler
velvet, prostaglandins may assist in the capacity of the extract to reduce the
swelling associated with arthritis and injury. They also have physiological
responses in lipid metabolism, as seen in the cholesterol-lowering effects of
deer antler velvet on laboratory animals.
antler contains many different types of amino acids. Amino acids, often
referred to as the building blocks of proteins, are compounds that play many
critical roles in your body. Amino acids are organic compounds composed of
nitrogen, carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, along with a variable side chain group.
Your body needs 20 different amino acids to grow and function properly. Though
all 20 of these are important for your health, only nine amino acids are
classified as essential. These are histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine,
methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine. Unlike
nonessential amino acids, essential amino acids are those that can’t be made by
your body and must be obtained through your diet. Another type of amino acid is
a Free-form amino acid. This refers to single amino acid that is already in
a pre-digested form and ready to be used by your body. Some nutritional
products, especially amino acid blends, contain whole proteins and large
peptides (chains of amino acids), which the body must first break down into
smaller peptides and individual amino acids before use. For faster utilization
and better bioavailability, look for free-form amino acids. We can see that all
the various different type of amino acids works synergistically. They all have
WHAT SUPPLEMENTS ARE ADDED TO THE FORMULA TO
ENHANCE THE EFFECTS?
In addition to the Velvet Deer Antler which
provides all the aforementioned compounds. There are a host of other compounds
which enhance the efficacy of the product.
These include a natural matrix of herbs
bounded by research and science to help one’s stem cells become more active and
body supportive. The following compounds highlight these ingredients.
FUCOIDAN – found in the cell walls of certain
seaweed species that is has been used medicinally for a wide variety of health
purposes. Okinawa inhabitants have a diet rich in Wakame
seaweed, which contains the highest concentrations of Fucoidan. Okinawa is also
known for its high concentration of centenarians (people who are at least a
century old), which researchers believe is linked to their fucoidan-rich diet.
The anti-aging effects are associated with Fucoidan's remarkable ability to
facilitate tissue regeneration, immune function as well as improving cell-to-
cell communication. Not only is fucoidan known for its anti-aging effects, it
is also believed to combat cancer, metabolic syndrome and other degenerative
disorders. With stem cell therapy, there is always the risk that the adult stem
cells could migrate to other areas of the body unintentionally. However, the
daily use of fucoidan has been proven to increase mobilization of stem cells to
the appropriate area/ site of injury. Not only can fucoidan point the stem
cells in the proper direction, it has also shown to improve the stem cells'
survival during the differentiation process.
PTEROSTILBENE is a stilbene molecule and demethylated derivative of resveratrol ( it is more bioavailable than resveratrol) that is found in antioxidant-rich
foods like blueberries, cranberries and grapes. These
all help to slow down the aging process. It is an antioxidant that helps fight free
radical damage. It
is known to stimulate a series of pathways in the body called Sirtuin gene
pathways. The sirtuin genes have effects on a variety of other pathways in the
body. Ultimately, the Sirtuins are involved in the regulation of the
mitochondria and subsequent ATP production. Research has shown Pterostilbene protects
against memory loss, high cholesterol, high blood
and even certain types of cancer.
CARNOSINE is an important nonessential amino
acid that helps support brain,
heart, and eye health. It offers antioxidant protection from free radicals and
oxidative stress, boosts endurance, aids in the recovery process, and offers
RASPBERRY EXTRACT, one of the least known, but
yet strongest anti-oxidants that insures chromosomes retain their health and
rebuild themselves to optimum health.
RHODIOLA – an
adaptogenic herb that can elevate your mood and mental stamina, reduce the
stress hormone, cortisol and fight depression due to its
protective effects on key mood neurotransmitters. Rhodiola rosea extracts
have recently demonstrated its anti-aging, anti-inflammation, immuno-stimulating,
DNA repair and anti-cancer effects in different model systems. An adaptogenic
herb helps the body adapt to and resist physical, chemical, and environmental stress.
ASTRAGIN – a 100% natural compound which is patented
and promotes a healthy gut lining reducing inflammation in the intestinal
lining and increasing absorption of nutrients. AstraGin has the
ability to increase the assimilation of important amino acids which increase
nitric oxide levels in the human body, making it the perfect performance
enhancer when taken pre-workout. Higher levels of nitric oxide
result in enhanced blood flow to the muscle which leads to better pumps,
muscular contraction, and improved nutrient transportation. AstraGin also aids
in glucose absorption so having this pre-workout ensures that you have
sufficient energy levels whilst you train.
THE FINAL QUESTION HOW DOES THE ANTLER
PRODUCT GET TO WHERE IT IS NEEDED?
One could have the absolute best formula on paper
but the question is will it work? When we evaluate medications and supplements
a very important aspect to consider is what we call the pharmacokinetics of the
product. This concerns the science of how the drug moves around in the body.
Unfortunately, on paper many compounds seem very promising but in real life are
a failure. The main reason for this is that they cannot be absorbed by the
The mode of absorption of the antler product is what
is referred to as sublingual. This means it is absorbed under the tongue. This
is many times a very effective mode of absorption. It by-passes the gut and
goes directly into the blood stream where it is needed. The components are not
broken down. Also, in the saliva are very small particles called exosomes which
can be considered a rising star in drug delivery. Saliva is a very rich source
of exosomes. Thus, we have a very efficient method of delivering the velvet
components in a safe and reliable manner.
If we were to undertake the task of trying to design
a complete supplement to utilize in Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell therapy,
Velvet Deer Antler would be at the top of our list. It has most of the
ingredients needed for success. Furthermore, there is a very efficient way to
deliver the goods to the cell where they are needed. Deer antler will not be
the only modality we will use, but it certainly has an important place on our
mantle. We are constantly working to push the envelope and I suspect more advances
This is a question that, when I give a lecture to either doctors or the lay public, most everyone gets it wrong. I am not talking about the chocolate one finds in a Hershey’s kiss or chocolate bar, because the problem with these is that they contain too much sugar. I would consider them a very unhealthy food. Ah, but chocolate with no sugar, that is a whole different story. What I would like to do is introduce everyone to the science of chocolate. First off, where does chocolate come from? It comes from the tropical Cacao tree, where it is found in pods. Here we see a picture of the beans that are found in the pod. They are roasted and ground up, then turned into chocolate: When one adds the sugar to these products, that is when the damage occurs. Dark chocolate has both cocoa butter and cacao fiber, both of which science has proven to have health benefits. The cacao fiber is the part of the cocoa bean where most antioxidants are found. This is why dark chocolate with high cocoa solids, and thus more cacao fiber, is considered healthy chocolate. So, now let us get to the science.Dark chocolate is rich in minerals, such as iron, magnesium, and zinc (think anti-viral). The cocoa in the dark chocolate contains some amazing compounds called flavonoids and antioxidants, which have many health benefits. Chocolate is considered one of the best antioxidant foods known to man. The following chart clearly shows this:Antioxidants will neutralize free radicals. Free radicals are highly unstable molecules that are naturally formed when you exercise and when your body converts food into energy. Your body can also be exposed to free radicals from a variety of environmental sources, such as cigarette smoke, air pollution, and sunlight. Free radicals can cause “oxidative stress,” a process that can trigger cell damage. Oxidative stress is thought to play a role in a variety of diseases including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and eye diseases, such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. Remember that oxidative stress is one of the major causes of the failure of the immune system (again think virus infections). There is no question that dark chocolate is a superb antioxidant. In a study published in the October 2017 Journal of Community and Hospital Internal Medicine Perspectives, the antioxidants in dark chocolate were found to reduce oxidative stress, which scientists think is the primary cause of insulin resistance and subsequently diabetes. By improving your body’s sensitivity to insulin, resistance is reduced and, in turn, the risk of diseases like diabetes decreases.Also, at the center of chocolate’s health benefits are flavonoids. Most dark chocolate is high in flavonoids, particularly a subtype called flavanols, which are associated with a lower risk of heart disease and a variety of other conditions. As I have already said, some studies suggest chocolate or cocoa consumption is associated with a lower risk of both insulin resistance and high blood pressure in adults. These plant pigments are responsible for many of the health benefits of many fruits and medicinal plants, but chocolate may be a much more sensually pleasing vehicle. In addition, there is evidence that not only is chocolate rich in flavonoids, but that factors in chocolate somehow dramatically increase absorption of these compounds. The key flavonoids are procyanidins, which are similar to those found in grape seed extract, apples, berries, and pine bark extract. There are a few of these flavonoids that garner attention, such as PQQ.PQQ (pyrroloquinoline quinone) restores youthful cellular function and can extend the lifespan. PQQ helps generate and restore mitochondria, especially in aging cells. It allows the mitochondria powerhouses to work more efficiently. Dysfunctional mitochondria contribute to body-wide degeneration. Many of the diseases of aging have one thing in common; namely, they involve mitochondrial degeneration. Remember that mitochondrial degeneration leads to shortening of our telomeres. Shorter telomeres lead to aging. But it turns out PQQ has many other beneficial aspects.A team of researchers from China and Italy found that when PQQ was applied to human cells in culture, it delayed cellular senescence. A growing body of research suggests that reducing cellular senescence may lead to increased health and lifespan. Remember that a senescent cell is a cell that should have died but did not. These cells are like zombies, in that they attack normal cells. A senescent cell will increase inflammatory factors in various areas of the body. There is now a new name for this inflammation; it is called inflammaging. ‘Inflammaging’ refers to the chronic, low-grade inflammation that characterizes aging. We see that inflammation and aging are more or less synonymous. One causes the other to take hold. Recent studies have shown a way that PQQ may be able to slow aging even more, by reducing the activity of certain age-accelerating signaling pathways. The following is a chart shows different foods and the amounts of PQQ they have:Another important bioactive compound found in chocolate is Epicatechin, which is classed as a flavanol. Epicatechin is a natural flavonoid. It has been reported to possess an immense antioxidant effect, which contributes to its therapeutic effect against a handful of ailments. Epicatechin has many different functions. It will increase Nitric Oxide for increased vascularity and blood flow. It will lower cholesterol levels due to its natural antioxidant properties, while improving endurance and insulin sensitivity, regulating blood sugar levels, and stimulating muscle protein synthesis. A very fascinating property of Epicatechin is that it is a myostatin blocker.Myostatin is a type of protein called a myokine, which limits the level of muscle growth. Animals lacking myostatin, either due to a defective gene or because they have been treated with compounds that inhibit production, show huge increases in muscularity. In other words, the brakes on muscle growth are removed by the inhibition or absence of myostatin.Myostatin became famous within the bodybuilding community. It has been considered the holy grail of muscle building. Below is an example of a cow which has a gene that blocks myostatin. If you block myostatin in a human, a similar result will be obtained:A number of supplements have been designed to inhibit myostatin production over the past 20 years, but these have all been discarded as not working well. What is the exact epicatechin/myostatin connection? Research with epicatechin indicates that it increases levels of Follistatin, a special type of protein found in the muscles. Follistatin binds to and thereby inhibits the actions of myostatin in the body. In a nutshell, more Follistatin equals less myostatin, which in turn means more muscle mass and less fatty tissue.A study conducted on males of an average age of 40 showed that approximately 170mg of epicatechin per day, dosed at 2mg per kg of bodyweight, resulted in almost a 50% increase in Follistatin and a 16.6% decrease in myostatin, alongside a strength increase of 7%. In a second study, researchers provided participants with 50-200mg of epicatechin a day and were amazed to find that their Follistatin levels were 250% higher after just 5 days! In a study performed on mice, researchers found increases in nitric oxide and endurance that persisted even in the absence of exercise. In other words, epicatechin supplementation offers bodybuilders the potential for better muscle pumps and endurance even when they are not training. The same may hold true for the average person.As one can see, chocolate is one of the best health foods one can eat. Just remember to leave the sugar out. Do as I do, buy unsweetened chocolate and melt it in the microwave. When it is melted, then add some cinnamon (another great supplement) and Stevia as a sweetener. Sometimes we will add a bit of rum to spice up the flavor. I will typically buy my chocolate in bulk. Also remember that chocolate is much like wine; it can vary in taste by where it is grown and the growing conditions.Thanks,– Dr. P
At one time it was thought that there was little if any relationship between Senescent Cells and NAD supplements. We now know that this is far from the truth. Remember that the senescent cells are cells that should have died but continue to survive. By surviving they cause a multitude of problems. Senescent cells are believed to contribute to numerous age-associated diseases. Senescent cells are becoming a hot topic in the field of Regenerative Medicine. We now know they may be responsible for many of the failures in cellular therapy. Senescent cells are believed to contribute to numerous age-associated diseases. By the same token we now know that NAD, the supplement, is extremely important in general well-being and success in cellular therapy. Below we see diagrams concerning Senescent cells. The two above diagrams represent the essence of Senescent cells (Please see some of my previous blogs concerning Senescent cells).Unfortunately, many of the effects of the Senescent cells are found in the dark side of the first diagram. The elimination of Senescent cells by senolytic regimens (programs designed to kill senescent cells) appears to help in numerous aging-associated diseases including atherosclerosis, pulmonary problems, diabetes, neurological problems, cancer and osteoarthritis. Senescent cells secrete pro-inflammatory factors which are called Senescence-Associated Secretory Phenotype (SASP). These are essentially the “bad growth factors”. By the mechanism of the inflammatory growth factors, the Senescent cells are believed to contribute to numerous age-associated diseases. The second diagram shows the causes of cell senescence. These causes of cell senescence are essentially the causes of aging. We can see that the causes are multiple. The causes involve the usual suspects including DNA damage, mitochondrial damage, damage to the ends of the DNA called the telomeres, and finally what we call epigenetic factors.Epigenetic factors have far reaching effects. They involve changes to gene expression that our cells experience as we get older. These are commonly called epigenetic alterations. The following diagram demonstrates these facts.There are many factors that can affect the genes. The diagram shows some of the examples. These genetic alterations harm the fundamental functions of our cells and can increase the risk of cancer and other age-related diseases. The DNA is affected by the inflammatory cytokines secreted by the Senescent cells. These secretions are modifying gene expression in a cell, suppressing or enhancing the expression of certain genes in a cell as the situation demands. The genes which are turned on the cell can either be a friend or a foe. It can help prevent a cancer or help cause it. Here are two recent articles from two reliable sources concerning senolytic agents. As you can see Senescent cells are not some esoteric idea. They are becoming mainstream medicine. We are acutely aware of the importance of senolytic agents for overall health. They seem to be very important in NAD therapy also. Here are the articles: There is one other article which I will share with you which is more scientific discussing the Senescent cell problem.So, the real question is what do Senescent cells and NAD have to do with each other? Furthermore, are their paths on a collision course?Now I would like to discuss the collision course that NAD and Senescent cells are on. Recently I read a scientific article that was quite fascinating and thought provoking. The article discussed the ramifications of taking NAD+ supplements and their effect on Senescent cells. Let us do a quick review of NAD. NAD+ is a potent stimulator of the SIRT-1 gene pathway. This pathway is thought to be one of the major anti-aging pathways. This is the pathway that many people are familiar with by the effects of the compound Resveratrol which is found in red wine. Other methods of stimulating this pathway include calorie restriction, intermittent fasting, keto diet, high intensity exercise training, and perhaps most importantly NAD. When all is said and done the Sirtuin pathway stimulates the production and efficiency of the mitochondria which provide the cells with energy. Typically, the more mitochondria the healthier the cell and for that matter the healthier the person.From the point of view of anti-aging, NAD has tremendous potential. However, it seems that NAD may act as a double edge sword as we get older. There is no doubt that we become deficient in NAD as we age. The reason for this is multifocal. One important reason is that certain enzymes in our body become large consumers of NAD. Some of these enzymes are involved in the process of repairing DNA damage. If there is not enough NAD to go around than the NAD gets shuffled to the cells where it is an absolute necessity or the cells die. However, the consuming enzymes continue to try to utilize NAD but they will unfortunately not be able to accomplish DNA repair. If we are able to consume adequate amounts of NAD these enzymes get turned back on and do their important repair work. We are able to increase the amount of NAD available to the body by a variety of methods. One of the secret weapons we utilize is an NAD kinase patch. The NAD kinase patch contains an enzyme, NAD kinase, and penetrating molecules. This combination will dramatically increase the amount of NAD that enters the cell. As we age, we become deficient in the NAD kinase enzyme. This enzyme is the cutting edge of the cutting-edge technology especially when it pertains to NAD administration. It allows greater amounts of NAD to enter the cell. So far all seem good except for one detail. Both myself and my wife take NAD on a daily basis. We occasionally use the Kinase patches. We are doing this to hopefully “slow down” our aging. On the surface this makes perfect sense, yet some of the newest thinking demonstrates some potential problems when dealing with NAD administration. There is no doubt that I have Senescent cells in my body (recently I did a once a week x 2 regimen of Senolytic agents which has had some surprising beneficial effects). In the article I was referring to, on one hand it stated that the NAD+ levels decrease as we age leading to degenerative conditions. While at the same time, the number of senescent cells will increase with aging. The article states that decreased NAD+ levels that are associated with aging may actually decrease the effects of the senescent cells on the body. Conversely increasing NAD+ levels by supplementation either orally or intravenously or both methods may benefit tissue homeostasis, but also may worsen SASP and make the make the Senescent cells more aggressively inflammatory. This is certainly not a good thing. TAKEN TOGETHER THESE FINDINGS SUGGEST A FUNDAMENTAL TRADE-OFF IN TREATING AGING RELATED DISEASES WITH DRUGS OR SUPPLEMENTS THAT INCREASE NAD+. So, the bottom line is that we are increasing NAD levels which is a good thing but at the same time we are also making the Senescent cells increase the secretion of the inflammatory growth factors which is a bad thing.Another concern is a report that senescent cells can induce a cell surface protein called CD-38 on macrophages (a type of white blood cell in the immune system) and endothelial cells (Endothelium refers to cells that line the interior surface of blood vessels and lymphatic vessels, forming an interface between circulating blood or lymph in the lumen and the rest of the vessel wall). CD-38 is a molecule important for many different cellular processes, including calcium signaling, which regulates basic cell functions. CD-38 is the main enzyme involved in the degradation of the NAD precursor nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) in vivo, CD-38 has a key role in the modulation of NAD-replacement therapy for aging and metabolic diseases. However, too much CD-38 is a sign of inflammation. Research has linked overexpression of CD-38 to obesity, cancer, and infectious diseases, like HIV. Both the decline in NAD+ and the presence of Senescent cells are hallmarks of aging. We are aware that a supplement called Apigenin seems to help block the effects of CD-38. (Apigenin is found in many fruits and vegetables, but parsley, celery, celeriac, and chamomile tea. Apigenin is particularly abundant in the flowers of chamomile plants). Apigenin may eventually be part of a regimen when administering NAD.Until recently, it was unclear exactly how rising CD-38, declining NAD+, and the presence of senescent cells were all related. Scientists also know that the presence of CD-38 levels increase with age, and that CD-38 is involved in lowering NAD+ levels. It is a major consumer of NAD. In turn increased CD-38 expression is believed to be the key modulator of lowered NAD+ levels with aging in mammals. CD-38 is intimately related to our immune system but unfortunately not in a good way. In the following diagram, we see that the inflammatory growth factors from Senescent cells have a direct effect on what is called an M-1 macrophage. This is a type of white blood cell which is many times associated with inflammation in the body. Not a big problem when we are dealing with bacteria but not good for anti-aging.The accumulation of Senescent cells may itself be an important safeguard causing decreased NAD+ levels which in turn could promote a multitude of problems. On the other hand, the lower NAD+ levels may diminish the influence of Senescent cells which is the safeguard. What the scientists found was two-fold: First, they observed that inducing senescence did not lead the senescent cells themselves to produce more CD38. But, the senescent cells did, as expected, begin secreting a cascade of inflammatory chemicals that in turn, up-regulated CD38 in surrounding non-senescent cells. In other words, they infected normal cells much like a zombie infects normal people. Interestingly, they found that different inflammatory factors did not individually increase CD-38, but when combined led to a strong increase in CD-38 activity. In the end, the scientists observed this affect in all the types of cells tested. We are aware that Quercetin and Apigenin are two supplements that can diminish CD-38 effects. These also act as senolytic agents. As a matter of fact, Quercetin is found as a senolytic agent in many University studies. In these studies, Quercetin is combined with Dasatinib to act as a super senolytic agent. Dasatinib is a Leukemia medication that is being used “off-label”. Because the dosages are extremely small the side effects are minimal. The elimination of most senescent cells by senolysis (the killing of senescent cells) before initiating NAD+ therapies may be beneficial and increase safety. There is the possibility that it may eventually allow for need for little IV therapy and mainly rely on oral medication. I think to treat the patient with some form of senolytic agent prior to NAD therapy may possibly the new standard of care for patients receiving NAD therapy. Unless we address the Senescent cell/CD-38 problem, trying to raise NAD+ levels with precursors may come with too many downsides, preventing us from both having our cake and eating it too. So, what is the real bottom line? We strongly feel that Senolytic agents are imperative when using NAD+ intravenously or orally. Actually, I think they have a place in almost everyone. We want to diminish Senescent cells and their inflammatory growth factors and at the same time increase cellular NAD levels. Luckily, we have been aware of the Senescent cell problem some time now. We have been treating our patients with a number of different senolytic agents for some time. Some of these have included a P-53 patch, certain supplements such as Quercetin, even utilizing Quercetin and Dasatinib together. We have worked out very specific regimens for this. If a physician is not taking steps to deal with Senescent cells his overall chance of success will be much lower in Regenerative procedures and overall patient health. Furthermore, there is the possibility that the patient’s overall health may take a turn for the worse in the long run by increasing the effects of the senescent cells. Here is the bottom line from an article I read “reducing the senescent cell burden in persons around age 60 and middle-aged obese individuals may become a critical step in restoring youthful NAD+ cellular levels in a way that maximizes benefit.Younger, non-obese individuals may not have a significant senescent cell burden and thus may not need aggressive senolytic therapy before contemplating NAD+ restoration”. These are excellent recommendations. IF A PHYSICIAN WHO IS ADMINISTERING NAD+ IS NOT ADDRESSING THE SENESCENT CELLS PROBLEM THAN I SUGGEST THE PATIENT SEEK TREATMENT ELSEWHERE. YOUR HEALTH IS AT STAKE!!!Thanks,Dr. P
Once in a while I like to write a blog that is not all science! I must say that I was initially a bit intimated by my schedule.I left Miami on Thursday evening, arriving in Sao Paulo 8 hours later on Friday morning.Interestingly, there were a number people that I knew at the meeting. I have taught in Brazil on numerous occasions. I will return in October to teach a course. I received a warm Brazilian welcome. I was very impressed by the quality of the meeting and the speakers. I felt honored to be one of the Keynote speakers.My talk was an interesting one. I discussed Stem Cell Aging Pathways. As I have said “how Stem cells age is how we age”. In my journey thru the world of Regenerative Medicine I have become convinced that these pathways may be the Holy Grail for Anti-Aging methods. These pathways are what I call the upstream causes of aging. If we correct these problems in the pathways we will affect downstream problems. One pathway I stressed was the Sirtuin Gene pathway. I discussed its dependence upon the supplement NAD and other methods of stimulating this pathway. I mentioned our experiences with Intravenous NAD and one of our secrete weapons which is the NAD kinase patch. I received a number of questions from the audience. One exciting aspect of the talk involved the introduction of some brand-new technology. Actually, I have used this technology for years. This technology involves transdermal patches which introduce signaling molecules to spine, tendons and joints. These are called P3 AI and P3 R patches. The name for this technology is SIGMOLECS. This will be a quantum leap for many regenerative physicians. They now have technology that we have utilized for years. These patches are now registered with the FDA. Below is a picture of the packaging of the patches.I suspect this will become an integral aspect of most regenerative procedures. Signaling molecules tell cells what to do and when to do it. This is essentially the basis of a PRP preparation and a branch of medicine called Cytokine Therapy.This technology seemed to be well received by the audience. Unfortunately, my time in Sao Paulo was very limited and later that afternoon I found myself in another 2-hour traffic jam on my way back to the airport facing my second night in a row on an airplane.After a 12-hour plane ride I arrived in Beverly Hills California where the Cell Surgical International Conference was being held.My lecture this time concerned the nuts and bolts of Regenerative Medicine as it pertains to stem cells. I stressed the basic science but put a twist on it to show how if one knows the basic science he then has the intellectual tools to make procedures better. This is the essence of a new field of medicine called Translational Medicine. Translational Medicine is a rapidly growing discipline in biomedical research and aims to expedite the discovery of new diagnostic tools and treatments by using a multi-disciplinary, highly collaborative, “bench-to-bedside” approach. The lecture was a whirlwind of slides. I showed how the immune system and the stem cells are so intimately related. Hopefully I opened up a few eyes on these topics. There were many different topics covered in the meeting all of which were engrossing. Some of the topics covered musculoskeletal conditions while other dealt with neurological conditions.One of my friends, Dr. Nathan Bryant, who is a world leading expert in Nitric Oxide medicine gave a great slide that reminds me of my journey in Regenerative Medicine. It is as follows“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” – Arthur Schopenhauer I always learn something from a meeting that I lecture at. At this meeting I met many old friends and some new ones.My staff from the Cayman Islands attended the meeting:All-in-all, it was a hectic weekend but it was rewarding on many different levels. I enjoy teaching and the comradery of the meetings.BTW people are asking me if I had Jet Lag. The answer is a resounding, “no.” By using my laser watch, jet lag is never an issue for me. The laser wrist watch helps my body produce various compounds which helps my body fight jet lag.Thanks, – Dr. P