The reason I was so confused? Umbilical cord serum.
Actually, it isn't as strange as it sounds, and their preliminary results are promising. Read on to see what their founder wrote me in a reply email, and why I'm sharing it with you.
Novo Solutions is a very new company. It was started about two years ago by an Emergency Medicine physician, who saw the preliminary results of the main ingredient at a stem cell conference at Johns Hopkins. He teamed up with the cosmetic chemist responsible for the product, got the support of another businessman, and Novo Solutions was born.
The proprietary ingredient in Novo Solutions is human umbilical cord plasma (HUCP). This is obtained from blood left in the umbilical cord after birth. The mother is tested for diseases before giving birth. The blood left in the umbilical cord is tested just after birth. The blood is withdrawn from the umbilical cord after it is cut away from the mother and the baby, it would otherwise be thrown away, so don't worry about stealing blood from someone that needs it. From there it is sent to a cryobank in Florida, which is certified and licensed. The blood is centrifuged and separated, and what you get in the end is a cell free plasma to be incorporated into the skin care product.
So, why go to all of this trouble? HUCP has been found to have much higher levels of certain cytokines than normal adult blood. These are cytokines such as TGF, IGF, EGF, VEG-F and others. Do they help fight aging? The jury is still out on that, though many of them are growth factors and it makes sense that they'd affect the skin in some fashion. The product also contains peptides (learn more about how peptides work in skin care to help fight aging), which don't immediately decrease wrinkles, but do help over the long term.
Are there any results to back up the use of HUCP?
The company has been working closely with researchers at Northwestern University. They have more comprehensive studies planned. Here's more info on that first study:
It was conducted with six women of various ages in a double blind study by application twice a day for 26 days. One side of the inner upper arm had application of product with the umbilical plasma and the other side contained product that did not. Punch biopsies were obtained and sent to Dr Lavker for analysis. One of the subjects collected the fee but we found out did not apply the products. The results of the other five showed an increase in procollagen in the side treated with human umbilical cord plasma” hucp” vs. the side without “hucp”. The largest difference was 47.5 percent increase in procollagen with the “hucp”. The matrix constituent hyaluronic acid was measured. The side that applied product with“hucp” vs. the side without “hucp” were analyzed. The treated side with “hucp” demonstrated significant increases in tissue measurement of hyaluronic acid in four out of five subjects, with the difference as high as 80 percent in just 26 days.
So, what do you think? I think the prelim data above is pretty interesting. It would be really nice to know exactly how all of those cytokines are working on the skin, but for now they're just kind of using the shotgun approach with using all of them, but it seems to be working. I'm definitely interested in seeing what further results they come up with.
On the other hand, it does seem a little strange to be putting a blood product on my skin to fight aging. Do you think you'd use this skin care line?
Novo Solutions MD