What are Growth Factors and how do they “wake up” mature skin?

Growth factors are proteins that stimulate cell growth and function. They trigger cells to divide, grow, and produce proteins such as collagen, the basic building block of skin.

With aging, we lose about 1% of our fibroblasts, (the collagen-producing cells), each year, and we lose 1% of the thickness of the skin each year as well. This results in thinner, wrinkled skin.

The fibroblasts that are the mainstay of skin maintenance are “stem cells” that continually divide into new cells, and secrete stimulating growth factors. With the age-related loss of fibroblasts, there are less new cells, less collagen, and fewer growth factors produced. The fibroblasts that remain are also less sensitive to the growth factors present.

Originally extracted in laboratory settings for use on burns and other difficult to heal wounds, growth factors were then found to have beneficial effects on maturing skin by reversing some of the slowing of cell growth and collagen production. The best results have been found in preparations that have multiple growth factors in their formulas as these are more powerful in combinations than single factors alone. The increased collagen production thickens the skin, reducing wrinkling.

High-quality growth factor preparations are another tool in the arsenal to minimize the effects of aging-related changes in skin and keep skin strong and smooth.

Get in touch with Dr. Deb today to see how she can prescribe and treat your skin with high growth factor preparations. Here’s to healthy skin and a beautiful life!

Dr Deb Irizarry

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