Plant Stem Cells
Our skin is the largest organ in the human body and performs a critical role as our interface to the environment and as our first line of defence against external threats. It protects us from bacteria and toxins, minimizes water loss from the body and regulates our temperature. It is also the most visible sign of our aging!
The skin we see every day is not constant but is in a perpetual state of change. Like all of our body it is composed of cells and these cells undergo a process of renewal as cells at the skins surface are lost and replaced by new ones arising from deeper layers in the skin. But where do these new cells come from? The answer is Stem Cells.
Stem Cells are the subject of much medical research due to their unique properties. They are unique in our body in that they are able to replenish themselves through self-renewal and have the ability to differentiate – to become cells of other types. Of interest to us in the skin are Adult Skin Stem Cells which are able to become other types of cells in the skin – an ability called multi-potency. This capacity to become other cells is what allows the skin to be renewed – in fact our skin is completely renewed about every four weeks. So the maintenance of a source of healthy skin Stem Cells is critical to healthy, youthful skin.
All cells in the body – stem or otherwise – have the same DNA, so what makes a stem cell a stem cell? Stem cells are not immortal and can only divide a certain number of times and a stem cells ability to remain viable is determined by both genetic and, importantly, epigenetic factors – factors that determine a cells fate other than its DNA. In stem cells they act to preserve the cells multi-potency and ability to self-renew. As we get older the number of stems cells in our skin falls and with it the speed and efficiency of its renewal and the signs of aging such as wrinkles set in. But what if we could maintain our stem cells vitality for longer?
Wouldn't this be a path to skin that looks younger for longer? Plants also have stem cells. Like humans the maintenance of stem cells in plants is dependent on signals from epigenetic factors similar to that of our own stem cells. Mibelle Biochemistry researchers have looked at various plants to find a source of plant stem cells that give rise to epigenetic factors that might exert an effect like those inherent in adult human stem cells. When isolated and applied appropriately they provide a way to exert a positive impact on skin stem cells vitality and functioning.
Using advanced technology to isolate and grow human skin stem cells outside the body, Mibelle is able to expose them to active materials from plant stem cells and observe how it affects key measures of epidermal stem cell vitality such as viability and resistance against aging. From this they have identified sources that demonstrate the desired properties – and with it a way to enhance our own stem cells.
From this understanding Mibelle have developed the PhytoCellTec Malus Domestica and Argan lines of plant stem cell derived actives that can be incorporated into modern cosmetics. They offer a way to enhance the renewal and appearance of skin on multiple levels using stem cells from rare and unique plants that have been shown in laboratory and consumer testing to have significant benefits to stem cell vitality and key measures of skin appearance. Mibelle use advanced techniques to isolate and grow stem cells from these plants found to possess beneficial factors for human skin.
In this way only a small amount of the plant is needed, meaning rare and protected plants are not harvested from nature, ensuring their long term survival and sustainability of the PhytoCellTec products. These stem cells are then ‘harvested’ and their valuable contents encapsulated in liposomes ready for delivery to the skin.