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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.

Reprogramming of ASCs for Increased Osteogenic Potential

Principal Investigator
James Bradley MD, FACS


The Regents of the University of California, Los Angeles

Funding Mechanism
Pilot Research Grant

Focus Area
Cranio / Maxillofacial / Head and Neck, Tissue Engineering

Limited availability and morbidity associated with suitable bone grafts has driven tissue engineering approaches to osseous repair. We plan to create a cellular based construct that will form structurally and functionally normal bone that is clinically applicable by studying the osteogenic potential of genetically manipulated human adipose derived stem cells (ASCs) within a 3-dimensional culture environment. Ideally, osteoprogenitor cells would be autologous, easily harvested, and would maintain strong osteogenic potential in patients of all ages. Although ASCs are abundant and easy to obtain/process, their potential for osteogenesis decreases with increasing donor age. It has been shown that ASCs can be reprogrammed by four virally transduced genes, Oct3/4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc, to express embryonic stem cell (ESC) characteristics. By attaining an ESC-like state, induced ASCs (iASCs) may be able to not only increase bone formation but also maintain this response despite increasing donor age.
We plan to test our hypothesis by examining differences in proliferation and osteogenic potential between iASCs and control ASCs from the same donor. ASCs will be harvested from multiple donors allowing us to study the effect of increasing donor age. Lentiviral vectors containing the defined factors noted above and a lacZ marker will be used to transduce ASCs into iASCs which will be compared against appropriate controls. Population doubling time and DNA assays will be used to assess proliferative potential. Osteogenic differentiation will be determined by quantifying expression of osteogenic markers using RT-PCR, alkaline phosphatase assays, and Von Kossa mineralization. All experiments will be performed in both 2-D (PLGA film) and 3-D (PLGA Scaffold) cultures.
This work may provide further advance toward the creation of a clinically applicable bone graft substitute that can aid the plastic surgeon in the repair of bony defects.

Dr. Bradley is currently the Bernard Sarnat Professor of Plastic Surgery and Chief of Pediatric Plastic Surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is also the Director of the Kawamoto Craniofacial Fellowship and Chief of Plastic Surgery at Olive View Medical Center. He is Board Certified by both the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery. Dr. Bradley received his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Notre Dame for Anthropology and Art. In Philadelphia, he matriculated at Thomas Jefferson Medical College where he received his Medical Degree. He then trained in General Surgery at Pennsylvania Hospital. In Manhattan, he completed his plastic surgery training at the Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, New York University. In Los Angeles, Dr. Bradley did additional training in Craniofacial Surgery at UCLA under Dr. Henry Kawamoto. In Pittsburgh, he directed the Craniofacial Surgery Program and was the Chief of Pediatric Plastic Surgery at the University for several years before returning to Los Angeles. Clinically, Dr. Bradley specializes in Craniofacial Surgery and volunteers internationally to help children with Craniofacial deformities. He is active in the bone tissue engineering laboratory at UCLA. He has published over 100 scientific papers, written over 20 chapters and edited 3 books. He also has a strong interest in not-for-profit foundation work aimed at children with facial deformities.