2023 ON/AGA Orthoregeneration Award Awarded to Steadman Philippon Research Institute

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Research focused on how senolytic (anti-aging) agent can optimize tendon healing in rotator cuff repair

VAIL, Colo., Oct. 19, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Peter J. Millett, M.D., M.Sc. and Johnny Huard, Ph.D. teamed up to win the Orthoregeneration Network (ON) Foundation/AGA Orthoregeneration Award for research entitled, “Safety and Efficacy of Fisetin for Improving Rotator Cuff Repair: Initial Outcomes in a Sheep Model.” 

Dr. Millett is chief medical officer and an orthopaedic surgeon specializing in shoulder surgery at The Steadman Clinic and Steadman Philippon Research Institute (SPRI). Dr. Huard is the chief scientific officer and director of the Linda and Mitch Hart Center for Regenerative and Personalized Medicine at SPRI. The award is shared by former SPRI International Fellows Drs. Rony and Maria Dey Hazra of Germany, and Jeremiah Easley, D.V.M., professor of Veterinary Medicine at the C. Wayne McIlwraith Translational Medicine Institute at Colorado State University.

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This year’s award was presented on September 16, 2023 in Berlin, Germany to the research team by Dr. Matthias Steinwachs, president of the ON Foundation. The 2023 ON regenerative medicine award recognizes research on how Fisetin, a senolytic (anti-aging) agent, can optimize tendon healing.

“It is a thrill to have our original research recognized by the ON Foundation, an esteemed international organization that is dedicated to orthopaedic tissue regeneration,” said Dr. Millett. 

“Not only do rotator cuff tears increase rapidly with age, but we also see an increased incidence of retears as patients get older. Hypothesizing that age-related cellular aging (senescence) may be a factor, we worked with a rotator cuff tear model, finding that animals receiving Fisetin and bone marrow stimulation had reduced creatine kinase in their blood, better muscle relaxation, less degeneration, as well as improved tissue markers and fewer senescent cells.”

Co-investigator Dr. Johnny Huard noted, “Surgeons and patients need safe, effective solutions for the pain and dysfunction that accompany rotator cuff repairs. This research opens the door for new thinking and better clinical solutions for our patients.”

“This novel work that resulted in a decrease in inflammatory properties and enhanced biomechanical functioning is extremely promising,” added Dr. Matthias Steinwachs, chief medical officer at SportClinic Zurich. “This is just the beginning of determining how such treatments might improve patients’ recovery.”

Dr. Millett shared, “For over 15 years SPRI has welcomed international visiting scholars—orthopaedic surgeons who work with us in our clinics and laboratories. The scholars not only bring ideas to Vail and help advance our research, but they also become ambassadors for SPRI when they return home. Dr. Rony Dey Hazra and his wife Dr. Maria Dey Hazra of Germany were our visiting scholars in 2021-2022 and contributed significantly to this research. This was absolutely a team effort and team win.”

This research was supported by a generous philanthropic contribution from Björn and Kathy Borgen of Vail, Colorado.

CONTACT: Lynda Sampson Steadman Philippon Research Institute 970-479-1563 [email protected] 

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