The Plastic Surgery Foundation
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Grants We Funded

Grant applicants for the 2023 cycle requested a total of nearly $4 million dollars. The PSF Study Section Subcommittees of Basic & Translational Research and Clinical Research evaluated nearly 140 grant applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded research grants totaling over $1 million dollars to support nearly 30 plastic surgery research proposals.

ASPS/PSF leadership is committed to continuing to provide high levels of investigator-initiated research support to ensure that plastic surgeons have the needed research resources to be pioneers and innovators in advancing the practice of medicine.

Research Abstracts

Search The PSF database to have easy access to full-text grant abstracts from past PSF-funded research projects 2003 to present. All abstracts are the work of the Principal Investigators and were retrieved from their PSF grant applications. Several different filters may be applied to locate abstracts specific to a particular focus area or PSF funding mechanism.

Remote Ischemic Preconditioning's Effect on Fat Graft Volume

Principal Investigator
Andrew Gassman MD, FACS


The Regents of the University of California, Los Angeles

Funding Mechanism
Pilot Research Grant

Focus Area
Breast (Cosmetic / Reconstructive), Cosmetic

Fat grafting is a powerful tool for the Plastic Surgeon. It allows surgeons to fill contour deformities and ameliorate some overlying skin problems with a patient's own native tissue. After the transferred adipose tissue establishes a local blood supply it represents long-term solution. However, inconsistencies in transfer, trauma associated with procurement, and local ischemia prior to the development of recipient circulation all contribute to highly variable long-term results. Refinements in harvest techniques have greatly improved the trauma and purity of adipose transfer. However, local ischemia remains a continued problem. The use of stem cell and growth factor therapies have been suggested. These invasive, expensive non-FDA approved regiments are believed to augment vascularization of the transferred adipose tissue. There is no multicenter clinical data documenting their effectiveness, nor do these approaches improve adipose cells ability to handle the ischemic insult associated with fat transfer. Remote Ischemic Preconditioning (RIPC) is a cheap non-invasive technique that has been used in several animal models and multicenter clinical trials to protect various organ systems (i.e. heart, lung, nerve, intestine, muscle, and kidney). No work has been done to analyze the effect donor or recipient RIPC has on lipoaspirate tissue. The specific aim of this project is to characterize the volume retention of lipoaspirate transferred in the setting of either donor or recipient RIPC. The data obtained from this study will demonstrate to surgeons the role RIPC plays in predictable fat grafting volume retention, and thus it will serve as initial work leading the way to eventual clinical trial.

Dr. Gassman graduated from the Loyola University’s Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago in 2005. He then went on to General Surgery training at Loyola. After his second year he was awarded a two-year research fellowship at the Burn Shock Trauma Institute studying peri-vascular biology. During that time he developed three-dimensional bioreactor systems that both modeled the angiogenic growth of vasa vasorum and engineered capillary networks in fibrin hydrogels. He then went on to complete his General Surgery training in 2012. Prior to completion, he was awarded the Keeley traveling fellowship, an endowment awarded to Chief Surgical residents that demonstrate clinical and academic commitment. During the fellowship he worked with Wayne Morrison at the O’Brien Microsurgical Institute in Melbourne, Australia. Dr. Gassman is currently a board certified general surgeon and a Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery resident at the University of California Los Angeles.