AnteAge. A brief history and unabashedly biased review.

Is our baby the best and cutest in the world, or what?

DISCLOSURE: THE FOLLOWING IS A DISCUSSION OF PRODUCTS THAT DR JOHN AND DR GEORGE HAVE A COMMERCIAL INTEREST IN.  THIS IS FOR EDUCATIONAL AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY, AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN ADVERTISEMENT FOR THESE PRODUCTS, OR AN OFFER TO SELL.  WE DO NOT ALLOW ADVERTISING ON BFT, EVEN FOR OUR OWN PRODUCTS.  DO NOT READ IF YOU DO NOT AGREE WITH THESE TERMS OF SERVICE.

Can parents be expected to give an unbiased review of the amazing wonder and beauty of their newborn offspring ? Hardly.  We all take such reviews with a large grain of sodium chloride, knowing that emotion overcomes logic, perceptions become filtered, and truth suddenly becomes a matter of interpretation rather than based on cold hard facts.

When BFT was launched last autumn, we promised a no holds barred approach to skincare science and products, and to educate our readership about the good, bad, and ugly of the cosmeceutical marketplace.  From the feedback and participation we received, our efforts are appreciated and making a difference.

And, as we disclosed 6 months ago when we started this blog, Drs. John & George  are physician-scientists in the world of stem cells and cosmeceuticals, and our day job is with a company called Cellese Regenerative Therapeutics.  We also revealed that the company was working on a product.  Many of you inquired along the way, and we promised to tell you when it reached the market.  That product (AnteAge) has now been released.

We debated whether to discuss that product here at all, since the mission of barefacedtruth is uncovering the (sometimes ugly) truth in the world of cosmeceuticals, and educating about the underlying science, not promoting our own products.  We asked some of our regular BFT readers what they thought. The typical reply was: “why not? … as long as you are discussing the science.  Like why you chose certain ingredients, that sort of thing. In fact, we would love to hear more.”

confirmation bias

Bias is a fact of life. We are all predisposed to negative or positive views of various things, based on our prior experience, training, and various motivations (especially economic).  In the context of product reviews, it is best just to state your biases up front so that readers can judge for themselves whether the data and opinions have any merit at all, or are simply the product of these biases.

We are scientists and entrepreneurs. Our opinions of our own products are shaded by the fact that we are heavily invested (time and money), and the economic motivation that we might break even on all this (or even make a profit) someday in the distant future.  Another obvious bias comes from the fact that we designed these products from the ground up based on our own scientific discoveries, knowledge base, and opinions about what works and what doesn’t.

Another area of curiosity we thought we thought we could satisfy is that which is reflected  in a question we get a lot: how do products get from laboratory to market?  Being the most transparent cosmeceutical scientists on the planet, we thought we could share some of that with you.  Not everything (we do have a board of directors, and employment contracts with confidentiality clauses) but since BFT is separate we have an independent platform.

Disclaimer: THIS REVIEW IS UNABASHEDLY BIASED. READ AT YOUR OWN DISCRETION.  IT IS NOT AN ADVERTISEMENT.

Having disclosed our inherent biases in no uncertain terms, we can now go about trying to give you a review that contains some useful facts and insights.  Regardless of how we go about this, some will accuse us of shameless promotion, or of abandoning the truth mission of BFT.  We are used to taking heat;  that’s  not a problem.  We will try to do this with delicacy and self-awareness, and trying hard keeping our core principles intact.  We also do it with tongue in cheek, as we often do around here, as you may have noticed.  This wouldn’t be BFT if we did everything with a straight face.

Part 1.  A brief history of AnteAGE

We are going to start with the AnteAGE genesis story.  We want to share the process of discovery and product design. The trials and tribulations of moving from lab discovery through many steps before a product can be born. We hope you will find it interesting, and afford insight into the process of science.

cytokine farming – do not try this at home

AnteAge was  in development for 3+ years.  It went through multiple iterations, a gyrating course of discovery-testing-trial-more discovery and so forth.  The key ingredient (stem cytokines) has actually been around for longer than that – and we were not the first to witness the skin rejuvenation benefits of cytokines. In fact, products based on earlier technologies and using other cell types under growth promoting conditions have been around for more than a decade (e.g. SkinMedica TNS serum, based on fibroblast cell conditioned medium, which contains a mixture of cytokines & related proteins).

We decided to employ not fibroblasts, but stem cells, and indeed a particular class of stem cell that is the subject of intensive work in many other stem cell laboratories around the world; one whose primary role on human physiology seems to be healing and regeneration.  We have several posts here at BFT that reveal some of the wonders of these natural “911” cells and how they function.  They are called mesenchymal stem cells (MSC ‘s). They are capable of migrating to injured areas where they are “grabbed” by tissues in need, and where they set up a command and control center to coordinate healing.  They may engraft (attach and divide to become new tissue native cells (be it heart muscle or skin), but the majority of their work is orchestrating other cells. And they do it how?  With cytokines.  All cells create and respond to cytokines, but  MSC’s are cytokine powerhouses.  Again, this reflects their unique role in nature . They are all about communication (very talkative), and like to be in control (we were at one time tempted to call them mother-in-law cells, but first responders seems more appropriate in terms of what they actually accomplish ).

We are fortunate in that our principal collaborator at the university (one of the research docs on the stem cell institute) is an expert in cell biology, and a world class scientist.  The laboratory has success to equipment and resources that are rare and quite valuable in our work.  Plus, we are surrounded by other academic researchers working on all sorts of things related to stem cells.  We have access to some of the greatest minds in the field.

Our key discoveries have to do with understanding the pattern of cytokines (there are hundreds) and how they can be like letters in a word. The patterns are important, as is the cross chatter between cytokines within a cell culture.  By understanding the language of MSC’s we can harness their regenerative power.  It’s important to remember, AnteAge as a product contains no cells or cell parts or cell organs or any of that (some of our “stem cell cream” competitors break apart whole cells).  MSC’s are grown in “farms” of millions of MSC’s under strict sterile conditions in a university laboratory.  Their environment is highly controlled.  We mimic the niche they live in with the body. We “talk” to them.  They produce abundant cytokines in regenerative patterns.  We isolate them, leaving all that cell stuff behind.  Cytokines are further processed  to package them for delivery through skin (nanoliposomes).

Once we had demonstrated to our own satisfaction through various lab and clinical tests that stem cytokines provide benefits to aging skin, we began to design a complete system.  As clinicians we are always looking to the evidence base for best practices and solid efficacy data.  So we went to the published literature to find what other biochemical actives work, their level of evidence, how they work (or “mechanism of action” at a cell biology level), in what dosages, on what parts of skin, their chemical characteristics, cross compatibilities, and absorption characteristics.  Armed with all that, we hired a highly experienced  and quite well known cosmetic chemist, who worked with us diligently through many iterations to come to the products we now call AnteAge.  Each active that made the final cut has solid evidence for efficacy and safety, does not conflict with other ingredients (plays nice with others), and fits nicely into the overall puzzle.  In some cases there is overlap (e.g. cytokines amongst the many things they do, affect collagen synthesis, as do “collagen-fragment” peptides –but act  on different pathways, so they can be expected to be additive).

AnteAge is a dual-part system.  A serum, and an accelerator which is more like a light cream in texture and substance.  Either alone is actually a complete product, but they are designed to work together. Separating the actives into two parts like this gave us much more flexibility, as the storage characteristics and behavior of the “emulsions” in each are different. We get better stability and shelf life, particularly for liposomes and nanosomes.  We don’t have to put “things that sting” in there.  The serum goes on first, and is allowed to sit for a minute before applying the accelerator.

The formulation stage was a challenge for all involved.  We utilized multiple contract laboratories to produce a series of “lab batches” of each product.  We would test each batch with a small group of beta subjects, and we went through multiple iterations, solving a variety of problems along the way, as we perfected the serum and accelerator to the satisfaction of our beta group.  We are very fortunate that Cellese’s COO – Steve Rockey, MBA (he goes by just plain “Rockey” – no first name needed –  kind of like Ghandi),  is a diehard perfectionist himself.  Nothing escapes this man’s attention and close scrutiny.  He passionately cares about the quality of the products. He and his team are simply the best.  How’s that for an unabashedly biased review?

The next stage in the development was a clinical trial of the system as a whole.   We recruited 49 people (45 women and 4 men) to a trial taking place in the final quarter of 2011. The results surprised even us.  We had been through a small clinical trial with an early  generation of our stem cytokines active with another formulation, marketed through others, and had seen positive results way back then. But the continuing development work had paid off – we were now seeing  stellar results in 12 different skin parameters that relate to aging, no adverse reactions,  and very happy subjects.  At one point we started to worry that we had inadvertently created an addictive substance. Several  who ran out of trial supplies were calling and e-mailing in panic that they might miss a day.

Once the clinical trial was completed, several more months were required to work through the maze of tasks involving containers (they need to be in airless pumps to keep the proteins fresh), labels, artwork, manufacturing,  inventorying ingredients (some are not easily obtainable, and so we had to stockpile these months in advance), working with contract manufacturers, sterility & stability testing, regulatory hoops, logistics, etc .  There’s much more, this is a short list.  Again, applause to Rockey and his tireless efforts.

AnteAGE by Cellese was launched Q2 2012. We are delighted with the early market response.  We have had a couple of glitches e.g. (containers that weren’t assembled correctly, that needed to be replaced, and resulted in a recheck of the entire inventory).   We have nothing but positive feedback from the early adopters out there.  Although we caution everyone (ourselves included) that these types of skin care products take several months to achieve full benefit.  Which is why we tend to look askance at those who change products monthly and then review them, ignoring the overlap, and the time lag of effects..

Meanwhile we continue to “push the envelope” (we are chock full of cliches today).  We have accelerated our research and development program, further refining the value we can extract from farms of millions of hard working stem cells making just the right pattern of cytokines for you.  We have a collaboration beginning with a world class anti-aging research lab which we anticipate will drive further discoveries. We are generating new and quite interesting data from experiments which we hope to be able to share with you soon.  We are also exploring some other quite fascinating areas that we think will bear fruit pretty quickly (e.g. the world’s most direct antioxidant system,  wrapped into a variety of skin care products, and so potent  that you can even bathe your whole body in it).  We are talking whole body anti-aging.

Now we have been through this history, and really haven’t said much in terms of a product review. We had to save something for part 2 of this series.  We will be looking next at the ingredients (why each one and the combo), share more news about stem cytokines, and discuss the results of the clinical trial.

Feel free to leave comments.

Back soon with part 2 of the unabashedly biased review.

60 Comments

  1. Firefox7275 says:

    Appreciate the honesty, it’s interesting to get some more background. Looking forward to reading the published research!

  2. Jina says:

    I have ordered 2 samples one for my husband as well so I cannot wait to try out but my question is that will you be bringing out a body creme anytime soon?

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Jina, we are working on a body product. Can’t say too much now, but we are very excited about it. Based on some unique chemistry involving H (#1 on the periodic table).

  3. Susan Dent says:

    Thank you for the update Dr J. As Firefox said, appreciate the honesty about your ‘baby’.

    A body product, wow! Would it contain your signature ingredient, or just this unusual hydrogen based Thingie? (That’s the scientific term! 🙂

    • drjohn says:

      Apple: “we never discuss future products”. BFT: “let’s talk about the future”. Cellese is somewhere in the middle.

  4. Miss Wisteria says:

    I have a question: you say yourself that a product needs many months before seeing real result… The test objects were on a 6-weeks trial…
    Why didn’t you have a longer trial?…

    • drjohn says:

      Clinical trials, especially larger ones like ours, are logistically challenging and expensive to conduct. While the main trial stopped at 8 weeks, we do have a small subset of subjects we follow long term, and will report on their progress in the near future. Anecdotally I can say that those folks who have used it for 6 months report continual improvements.

  5. Jen W says:

    The research and product sounds remarkable!

    Are you going to publish your results in peer reviewed journals?

  6. TheWetNoseClub says:

    whoo-hoo!! i’m very excited to learn more as well as try the products. good job!

  7. Grateful to have discovered this site. Am ordering some for myself to try before ordering for my center.

  8. Lil'Gracie says:

    I’ve been wondering – what happened to Part 2 of this article? I’d like to read more of what you have to say about Anteage. I just ordered some and I have just started using it – so far, so good!
    Thanks for the effort and this site!

    • drjohn says:

      So glad you like the product, so far. We have been so busy in our new research efforts and reaching new customers that we have been negligent in reporting the science to you. I promise to do a followup piece in the next few days. Thank you for reminding, and hope to hear back from you once you have experience with AnteAge.

  9. Michelle says:

    I may be out of my depth here, but I wonder if mesenchymal stem cells secrete cytokine as a reaction to damage, theoretically would damaging the dermis (through dermal rolling, LED, laser treatments etc) enhance the effectiveness of the cytokines? In essence could we attract the cytokines to deeper layers and pump up their restorative action?

    I know you addressed the healing benefits of using your AnteAge product post-dermal rolling in your “Matrix-Elastin” post, but I wonder if you’ve looked at or are planning to look at how or if the damage affects the function of the cytokines.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Michelle, I would state it the other way around. Stem cytokines in AnteAge should enhance the effectiveness of any procedure that works by causing damage with the hope that healing will bring with it younger and thicker and healthier matrix with it. But you are spot on with your suggestion that we would want to know how damage effects cytokine production. We have examined that, and continue to do so. The crux is this: damage in the short term causes inflammation, and the faster that is resolved in favor of “non-inflammatory healing” (regenerative, or scarless healing) the better for your skin (for reasons that are hopefully now obvious). We continue to be very concerned about the long term use of any product with ingredients that inflame. We continue to encounter evidence that such a practice would lead to accelerated aging, not anti-aging.

  10. Jules says:

    Although I haven’t read your complete website yet, I am already intrigued… Perhaps you could spare a moment to learn a bit about Hailey-Hailey Disease (http://omim.org/entry/169600) and any possible positive effects that cytokines could have in treatment of this condition. Interestingly, the symptoms are rarely seen much before the age of 30. Thank you for your time and please feel free to contact me further – this is the most promising area of treatment that I have come across in many years.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Jules, proinflammatory cytokines IL-6 and IL-8 play important roles in the regulation of ATPA2 and ATP2C1 which are implicated as downstream results of the genetic abnormalities in Hailey-Hailey Disease. I heard recently about someone using anti-cytokine antibodies against these culprits. Very interesting.

  11. caroline says:

    Hello Drjohn, i’m interested in buying the AnteAge trial and travel size cream. How many days would it last? And is it enough to see results on your skin?

    • drjohn says:

      About enough for 10 days. Many skin issues see improvement within hours (I know that sounds insane – but we will share some 6 hour before/after pictures here soon). These are generally pigmentary issues with lots of inflammation, and hydration is improved rapidly, as is tone. Pores also are often reported to shrink. Things that take longer than 10 days are the more chronic inflammatory issues with structural changes like acne scars and fine lines and wrinkles, dark spots, laxity, that sort of thing. These require time to regenerate new dermal and epidermal structures.

  12. C. says:

    For the layperson, what are the circumstances under which the adult (youth) human bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells are collected? Are these voluntary donations?

    • drjohn says:

      These are paid volunteers. Generally college students. They have to undergo extensive screening (history, blood tests, etc) to assure they are healthy. The procedure is done under local anesthesia. The volumes removed are quite small, similar to the bone marrow diagnostic procedure commonly performed to evaluate anemias. A young body replenishes this quickly. One sample can be expanded in culture (cells make many more cells) to millions of cells. These cells are then employed using proprietary protocols to manufacture an amazing array of anti-inflammatory cytokines, growth factors, and a bunch of other signaling molecules.

  13. Jennifer says:

    It’s tempting for me to try out your products. How long will your 30ml bottle last, and how soon will we be able to see results? 🙂

  14. Charles says:

    Hey docs, thanks again for this awesome resource. I had a couple of questions if you don’t mind:

    1. I see that AnteAge has peptides equivalent to Matrixyl 3000. Why was Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-38 (marketed as Matrixyl Synthe’6) excluded? Cost? Redundant? Unproven?

    2. Do you use liposomal/nanosomal encapsulation for the peptides or just the cytokines? If you don’t, would you consider that a good or bad idea – in other words would encapsulation potentially take the peptides *past* the layer where you want them? I ask because I’m thinking of using these peptides for non-face areas, and liposomal encapsulated peptides seem to be available in bulk.

    3. since your cytokines come from the multipotent BM-MSCs of young donors, if I use your product, is it accurate to say I bathe in the blood of virgins?

    • drjohn says:

      Charles, excellent questions as always. There is good in vitro and in vivo evidence for palmitoyl pentapeptide-3 (Pal-KTTKS) which is a relatively small synthetic molecule. Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 (he other part of Matrixyl Synthe’6) has different claims – to reduce inflammatory cytokines, certain interleukins. But when we examine the experiments they performed in vitro they make little sense to us. And that is what AnteAge does so well – it pushes the balance of all the interleukins, growth factors, mRNA’s etc to be very anti-inflammatory. So, even if the newer molecule worked, it would be totally redundant and would be overwhelmed by the more direct approach we take. The Pal-KTTKS is “palmitoylated” which means it is bound to a lipid, which makes it penetrate and stay in the dermis and epidermis. There is good data for this. There is no worry about nanoencapsulated cytokines and growth factors getting past the skin – these are totally natural human molecules and would be like spitting in the ocean if they reached the circulation.

      Rather than bathing in the blood of virgins (no blood, and probably few are virgins) I would term it “bathing in the same natural growth factors you had in abundance in your youth”.

  15. Nancy Weeks says:

    Hi Docs,
    I am thinking of ordering the Anteage products. How do they compare with the Skinmedica TNS products or Neocutis products? I am 64 and live in Arizona where the climate is very dry. Is the Anteage system compatible with an additional moisturizer, sunscreen or make up? Do you have any recommendations for an additional moisturizer or sun screen?
    Thanks,
    Nancy

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Nancy, we get lots of kudos from persons living in dry climates, be it the desert or high altitudes or cold winters. AnteAge is a perennial best seller in the ski resorts of Western Colorado, and in Rancho Mirage and Palm Springs! You can use it under makeup or sunscreen, yes.

      Skinmedica TNS and Neocutis derive their mixture of growth factors from fibroblasts, not stem cells. Studies have show that mesenchymal stem cells in culture make 10-50 times as much of these valuable peptides and proteins. Plus there are mRNA’ and nicroRNA’s and exosomes that are unique to the fact that stem cell’s role is to make new cells and differentiate into e.g. fibroblasts. But the role of fibroblasts is to make matrix proteins (like HA and then collagen). In the pecking order of regeneration, stem cells are the generals. Fibroblasts are the corporals. Who barks the orders (through biosignaling molecules)? It’s the generals. And MSC’s are the 4 star generals. Their whole job is repair and regenerate. Both SkinMedica TNS and Neocutis have unpleasant odors, according to formwer users. The fibroblasts in the case of Neocutis are derived from newborn foreskins. They don’t like to talk about that, we have found.

  16. Lindsay says:

    My question is related to the application of mesenchymal stem cells, derived from bone marrow, and other information I have found regarding stem cells being unable to survive being added to skin care products. For example, from an on line source, “Stem cells in skincare products do not work as claimed; they simply cannot deliver the promised results. In fact, they likely have no effect at all because stem cells must be alive to function as stem cells, and by the time these delicate cells are added to skincare products, they are long since dead and, therefore, useless”.

    Thank you.

    • drjohn says:

      Lindsay, some writers are uninformed. It is not the cells, but what they cells make in the lab, that is applied to the skin. And that is pretty much how your own stem cells work in your body, by creating these same exact molecules. So the products are truly mimicking natural mechanisms of youthful regeneration. Please write to those authors and tell them about the amazing world of stem cells of which they are unaware. We can point them to many thousands of high quality peer-reviewed scientific publications they can read if they want to expand their knowledge.

  17. Lindsay says:

    Are stem cytokines signaling proteins? I’m having trobule understanding the fact that stem cells cannot live in a skincare product.

    “Skin care products do not contain actual stem cells. Whether the source is plant, animal or human stem cells, these cells are living things, which are way too large to penetrate the stratum corneum (the outer layer of the skin) for topical application, and too fragile to exist in skin care formulations. What can be helpful for topical skincare formulas are the signaling proteins and/or metabolites that the stem cells secrete as part of their normal rejuvenating functions. These can be valuable for skin that has lost its useful supply of these due to the aging process.”

    • drjohn says:

      Yes, Lindsay. The signaling molecules spoken of are stem cytokines. Growth factors are in fact one type of cytokine. There are also a other classes, interleukins, AMP’s (antimicrobial peptides, like the defensins), mRNA, miRNA. T

  18. Lindsay says:

    Thank you for the prompt response.

    So cytokines (growth factors) are proteins, but not living? But that doesn’t matter? They will still regenerate?

    So the stem cytokines still need to be from mesenchymal stem cells for best results? Meaning, plant growth factor doesn’t work. I aks because in my research I have discovered a product line called Stemology. They use mesenchymal cells from bone marrow and plant stem cells. Any advantage there?

    Finally, are peptides able to penetrate the skin? For example I am currently using a product that has peptide 38 in it, I think from plant stem cellls?

    Thanks in adavance. I am simply a comsumer trying to understand this.

    • drjohn says:

      Lindsay, cytokines & growth factors are molecules, not cells, so we cannot say they are living, but they are totally natural and native to humans. These same molecules are the ones your body used as it was developing and growing, and for repair and regeneration. They are at the core of regenerative medicine. Plant growth factors do not work, and a botanist or any other real scientist will laugh if you suggest they will. Plants use entirely different molecules to drive their growth. If you body could listen to the signals, it might grow a leaf or make chlorophyll. The notion is absurd. I would not trust any company that sells plant stem cells because it signifies they know little about science. Its like going to a botanist to have heart surgery. Except the vast majority botanists are not ethically challenged (like some skin care companies) and would to refer you to the right docs. Peptides can enter the skin. It helps if they are nano’ized and attached to lipids. We welcome your questions.

      • LindsaY says:

        Thank you.

        From another on line source, it is being suggested that the “activity of growth factors is lost withing days in water or as solids at normal temps”. How does this factor into packaging of growth factor molecules and thier effective ability to interact with the skin?

        “A shortcoming of HGFs, according to an article by Dr. Donald R. Owen in Global Cosmetic Industry (March 1999)…Actual growth factors such as EGF and TGF-B lose their activity within days in water or even as solids at normal temperatures …. ” (http://www.paulaschoice.com/cosmetic-ingredient-dictionary/definition/human-growth-factor)

        I guess I don’t understand the value of peptides. Are peptides supposed to work like growth factor? Does it matter if peptides come from plants or humans in order to have an effect on the skin, similar to plant growth factors not working on human skin?

        From another on line source, “Another twist on the stem cell issue is that cosmetics companies are claiming they have taken components (such as peptides) out of the plant stem cells and made them stable so they will work as stem cells would or that they will influence the adult stem cells naturally present in skin.” (http://www.paulaschoice.com/cosmetic-ingredient-dictionary/definition/stem-cells)

        Thank you.

        • drjohn says:

          Lindsay, like all proteins, there is ample opportunity for degradation, from oxidation to simple unfolding. Here is how to prevent same – 1. Freeze proteins up until you use them in a formulation, 2. Wrap them in a molecular protective lipid envelope. We use nanolipid technology, and also hyauronosomes. HA itself is a natural protectant, as it has carrier grooves that fit GF’s (which is where they attach in your body to last longer), 3. Make sure nothing else in your formula is hard on proteins (acids, some preservatives, and 4. Make sure you have a covering so they don;t sit on the skin surface and dry out there. That is why AnteAge is a two-part system.

          I have never heard of Dr Owen, and 1999 was a long time ago, and industry mags have a habit of asking non-experts to answer expert questions. I doubt he knows anything of the above, as much has been invented since 1999.

          Anything you read about plant stem cells working as signals to human skin is science fiction. You can ignore it.

          Peptide means small protein. Growth factors are peptides. You are thinking of the term peptide as used to describe some actives in skin care. Most of them are nonsense, unnatural, unphysiologic, no good lab or clinical data to speak of. There are a few (like GHK that are proven, but only a few. GF’s have 40 years and hundreds of thousands of publications showing what they do.

  19. Simi says:

    Hi,

    My question is Can we use estee lauder advance night repair with Ante age serum ? instead of anteage accelerator. or use accelerator 2-3 night with serum and advance night repair other night of the week and during the day after serum ? What would be an ideal regimen for someone with melasma and combination skin. I would love to hear from you any product recommendation to use with ante age serum. And please recommend good sunscreen. Hope to hear from you soon.

    Thank you

    • drjohn says:

      Yes, you can use them together, in any combination. Use the AnteAge serum first, always. We have seen some superb results with AnteAge for melasma, but we are also working on a radically new product, based on key communications between stem cells and melanocytes, that we believe will truly be a game changer. Stay tuned. Our favorite sunscreens come from Tizo. Medical grade, world class.

  20. Scout says:

    Hi!

    I just stumbled into this “discussion”, after reading the article here on the bft website about EGF’s. First I want to say I am not from the US, I am from Northern Europe and as much as skincare and anti ageing is huge there too, there is generally a scepticism for using more invasive products that may come with a bunch of side effects or unwanted effects, like medication so to speak….
    I have however been trying to read up on what EGF’s are since I am interested of course as all women over forty, (and I guess sadly today even women who have not yet left adolescence are), in what you can do to prevent your skin from ageing at least too fast. Also in my age and with my heritage I have begun developing mild Rosacea, that is highly annoying and experience some hormonal changes. But I always get stuck at the horrors of thinking that anything you may put on your skin might cause you way worse problems like unwanted cellular change and even faster development of cancer that many do suggest EGFs may increase the risk for.

    Now to my questions… And I know of course this is a biased discussion. But I still would like to hear you elaborate some in this topic. There was especially one thing that the BFT article touched on that made me wonder a bit. In the article EGFs are discussed back and fourth and they describe the risks for developing cancer as EGFs can’t cause cancer, but if you already have undetected potential cancer developing in your body, the use of EGFs may so to speak boost the cancer… Now there are of course other things that can boost cancer like excessive sugar intake, too much sun and so on. But like the article said. The typical target audience for anti ageing skincare usually is a person who may already have sensitised skin, sun damaged skin, may be in an age when cell changes begin and so on…

    Now what are your thoughts on this topic? More specifically, are there people or situations in which it would not be advisable to use EGFs or products like the line you are developing that from the sound of it seem even more potent? Or is the discussion about EGFs vastly exaggerated? And if so, what makes it exaggerated?

    Also, would the use of your products also help with skin conditions like Rosacea? Or are they too active to use on irritated skin?

    Thank You in advance if you take the time to look into my questions! And also for offering your time and knowledge, biased or not… 😉

    Best Wishes

    Scout

    • drjohn says:

      Our view on all growth factors is the same as our view on all vitamins. We think they are great. We think sometimes they need supplementing. But if you supplement irrationally, you can cause problems. Witness the legacy of Adele Davis who likely caused the deaths of a good number of people back a half century ago with her whacky vitamin recommendations. Do GF’s cause cancer? No. DNA mutations cause cancer. Can GF’s be used by cancers to make trouble? Yes. Can you feed a cancer with GF’s. Yes, because all tissues use or respond to GF’s in some fashion. Just as with vitamins. It is well established that good nutritional status can feed a tumor. Oner of the early arguments against TPN (intravenous feeding) in cancer patients in the early days of my career. GF’s are like many other technologies – they can be used for good or evil. Cancers are like the evil empire. Don’t blame those conquered by them and put into service like the Jews in Nazi Germany.

      In general we say supplement with GF’s in a way that mimics nature. Restore skin to youthful levels, but do not take a single GF in obscene doses, summing up to a pharmacologic rather than physiologic effect. No heaping up of nasty plump tissues. Do no evil!

      As for rosacea – we have that solved. These pictures are of a Danish pharmacist with severe rosacea are 48 hours apart – before and after starting AnteAge.

      Rosacea before AnteAge

      Rosacea 48 Hours after starting AnteAge

  21. Rachel Rodriguez says:

    Hello!

    I love your site! I have become obsessed with skin care recently because I grew up in Miami where I allowed my skin to burn constantly and now I really regret it.

    I was searching for products to help my skin as much as possible from here on out, but I have a question… Am I too young to begin using ANTEAGE?

    I never really had skin problems except for mild breakouts and sun burns, and everyone constantly tells me I look 16 but I am desperate to help it now as much as possible. Thoughts?

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Rachel, You didn’t tell us your actual age. But if you look 16 I suspect you are well under 33 (the age wrinkles begin). Although we have heard about people using AnteAge to treat sunburn, with remarkable results, that’s probably not reason enough to purchase these products. I would suggest find get a high end sunscreen product and use it faithfully, day in and day out. We are doing one this year for ski resorts – we are calling it avant et apres (before and after in French) but the daytime product (avant ski) is a super sun block plus some DNA repair (for rays that get through), while the apres ski serum accomplishes both repair and rejuvenation using human stem cell technology. It’s good for any age. It’s great that you are a skin nerd at your tender age. Maybe you could come and work for Cellese! We are skin nerd headquarters.

  22. G says:

    Hi,

    Regarding the niacinamide in AnteAge, does niacinamide inhibit sirtuins? This confuses me because sirtuins also utilise NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide).

    Does Pro-Niacin (myristyl nicotinate) avoid the sirtuins issue?

    Many thanks.

    • drgeorge says:

      Sophisticated and fascinating question but before we answer it, let’s provide a brief review of sirtuins for our readership.

      Sirtuins (“silent information regulator genes”) are found in virtually all species from bacteria to mammals. They are involved in regulating important biological processes such as ageing, cellular death, inflammation and metabolism. Currently, the best hypothesis is that sirtuins protect cells from dying when they’re under stress, as well as influencing energy efficiency and alertness during low-calorie situations.

      Vitamin B3 (niacin) plays a critical supporting role in sirtuin enzyme activity, as does the amide form of this vitamin–niacinamide–which inhibits sirtuin enzyme activity. But this is far from a simple relationship. Rather it is linked to the energy status of the cell via the cellular NAD:NADH ratio, the absolute levels of NAD, NADH or niacinamide or a combination of these variables. Needless to say, the complex role, effect, and influencers on sirtuin effect on skin is unpredectable.

      So why do AnteAGE products contains niacinamide? Because it provides numerous scientifically validated benefits that improve the appearance and health of skin – reductions in fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmented spots, red blotchiness, and skin sallowness (yellowing). In addition, elasticity (as measured via cutometry) is improved.

      Long winded answer. Does that help?

  23. G says:

    Thanks very much for your response.

    Do you think the Palmitoyl Oligopeptide / Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 blend in AnteAGE is more effective than the Sederma Matrixyl 3000?

    I have only been able to find clinical studies on Sederma’s Matrixyl 3000, not any other Palmitoyl Oligopeptide / Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 blend. But I assume that using different ratios of Palmitoyl Oligopeptide : Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 would yield different clinical results.

    Thanks again.

    • drgeorge says:

      Matrixyl 3000 is the trade named combination product for palmitoyl oligopeptide / palmitoyl tetrapeptice-7,

  24. G says:

    Sorry, my question wasn’t worded as clearly as it could have been. By “Matrixyl 3000” I mean the Sederma stock solution glycerin, water, butylene glycol, carbomer, polysorbate 20, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7.

    Since Sederma’s concentrations of peptides in Matrixyl 3000 stock solution are proprietary, do the peptides in AnteAGE have different concentrations compared to Sederma’s Matrixyl 3000 (e.g. perhaps AnteAGE uses more Palmitoyl Oligopeptide and less Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, so the ratio of the two peptides will be different to the ratio Sederma uses)? If so, how do you know that the peptides in AnteAGE will deliver the anti-aging effects seen in Sederma’s Matrixyl 3000 clinical studies?

    Thank you for considering my question and providing such a great website. I look forward to your reply.

    • drjohn says:

      It is only the GHK peptide that we seek. We rely on the extensive published data on GHK (here is a nice recent review) rather than Sederma for validation or for dosing guidelines. Pal-GHK is just an easily absorbed form of GHK.

  25. Sandeep Kaur says:

    Hi,,I am 30 year old,,I do have little bit Milia under my eyes.I used to have really bad breakouts,,Then I used Accutane for 6 month.My skin is totally fine accept that Milia under my eyes.I wants to purchase your product.But you think it will work for me,,Also wondering if it’s going to break out my skin..Does it helps with discoloration,or with the scares.If yes,,then where I can buy it,,and what is the proper name of it,,Thanks ahead for your timing.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Sandeep. Yes. it helps with discolorations, and promotes anti-scarring anti-inflammatory regeneration of skin. We have anecdotal data suggesting it helps with milia as well in some cases.

  26. Kim Colonna says:

    Hi, I noticed there is now an MD version of the Anteage products. How do I purchase them, since they are not for sale on the website.

    • drgeorge says:

      AnteAGE MD is sold through physician offices and medical aesthetic spas only. Our reseller census is growing but for some people, there is no one nearby that carries the product. For those people we can sell product through our research clinic in California since I am the medical director and a licensed physician. Contact us with a phone number to call and we’ll set you up, or let you know if one of our resellers is nearby to where you live. You can contact us via barefacedtruth.com or AnteAGE.com.

  27. Jenny says:

    Hi there. It’s been awhile since grad school so I don’t remember as much about cytokines. I was wondering, since they’re involved in the inflammation cycle, do you extract specific cytokines that don’t increase inflammation? Also, does the product contact any retinol? I know some researchers believe that the inflammation caused by retinol can age skin further in the long run. And lastly, does Skinmedica TNS extract similar cytokines from the fibroblasts they culture? Thank you so much for your time 🙂

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Jenny. You are partly correct. We do not extract specific cytokines in the stem cell cultures, but we drive the stem cells down certain pathways (biomimicry) to assure a “net anti-inflammatory” pattern of cytokines & growth factors. There is no retinol in AnteAGE serum, but there is a retinol in the accelerator. SkinMedica TNS is based on the conditioned medium of fibroblasts. All cells make the same cytokines (its the language by which cells communicate with one another) but not in the same quantities or patterns. Published studies show that fibroblasts in culture produce only 1/10 to 1/50 as much of the key C&GF’s as mesenchymal stem cells of bone marrow origin. These stem cells are specialized for growth and repair. Fibroblasts are far more common.

      • Jenny says:

        Thanks for the response 🙂 I ordered my serum and accelerator and I couldn’t believe how fast it was shipped. I wasn’t even charged a shipping fee. Thank you for being so detailed and informative in all your responses. Your blog makes me feel like I attended a physiology lecture. Have a merry Christmas!

  28. JW says:

    Hello, Can AnteAge reverse, or heal, the effects of steroid cream damage? I am 47 years old. I thought I burned my forehead and nose with apple cider vinegar and a dermatologist prescribed hydrocortisone 2.5% cream to apply twice daily for 2 weeks. He then prescribed desonide cream with the same instructions. I did not apply the hydrocortisone to my nose, but I did apply the desonide cream for only a few days. I started to notice discoloration on my nose and immediately stopped treatment. The discoloration is on the area where I previously had rhinoplasty surgery. I consulted with another dermatologist and was informed I was misdiagnosed regarding burning my face and should not have applied any steroid creams. It has been 5 months since I stopped treatment and my nose is not healing, appears to be slightly indenting on the side and the discoloration is slightly worsening. I have included links to images if you feel inclined to look. Thank you for your time.
    http://i.imgur.com/zRQAzbD.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/Uk7iYVp.jpg

    • drjohn says:

      steroid dermatitis

      This is an image of a young man who was treated for seborrheic dermatitis with a steroid cream on his forehead. You can see the steroid induced dermatitis. After two weeks of treatment with AnteAge the dermatitis has disappeared. It never returned, and neither did the seborrheic dermatitis.

  29. GM says:

    Does AnteAGE use any recombinant DNA techniques (such as those used for HGH) in the preparation of its growth factors and cytokines?

    I contacted Cellese about this but did not receive an answer. I hope you can answer my question.

    Cheers,
    GM

    • drjohn says:

      Good question. AnteAGE is derived from human stem cells directly, and does not use recombinant technology. So the growth factors and cytokines are human and of human origin (in the technical sense of human cell cultures). Now, Cellese also has created a synthetic version from its stem cell technology, called Poly-GF. Here we replicate a stem cell pattern of C&GF, but we do so using recombinant technology. Thus Poly-GF is not “of human origin” although the individual molecules are precisely the same as human and in the right pattern.

  30. Rossy Teter says:

    Hi, I had a chemical burn in my cheek 2 weeks ago, my dermatologist prescribed your ”Stem Biogel” MD for healing my skin. it’s been great, slowly but steady my healing, now it looks like a pinkish skin but my color of skin is tan.
    Do you recommend the serum and the accelerator also to seed the process or should I stick with the Biogel for a longer period? (I’m worried about the retinol in the Accelerator could cause exfoliation/irritation instead of creating new skin on the burn?). The BIOGel brings TGF-B3, the serum or accelerator also brings this?
    And by the way, I don’t see that gel for sell in the official website. Where can I buy it online or any of the MD line? Thanks!!

    • drgeorge says:

      Was this an intentional or accidental chemical burn (i.e. chemical “peel”)? Certainly, the fact that the skin is healing in a pink color vs. the normal color of your skin, which is tan, is perfectly normal. The newly healed skin takes time to for the epidermal layer to thicken, for the keratinocytes to proliferate, and take up the melanosomes produced by your melanocytes. Unless the melanocytes have been harmed by too aggressive a burn, your color should return, although entirely back to normal can be difficult to predict.

      BioGel is a wonderful topical occlusive made from vegetable lipids (oils) vs. petroleum (e.g. Aquaphor) that also contains boric acid and TGF-beta 3. A very successful strategy for accelerated and minimally inflamed healing, is use of AnteAGE MD Serum along with BioGel until healing is complete, then introduce Accelerator.

      You can purchase AnteAGE MD products from medical practice resellers. If there is not one in your location, you can contact BFT again and we’ll arrange for you to purchase through our research clinic and medical director.

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