Swiss Startup Declares War on Wrinkles

Text by Kassandra Bucher

Who doesn’t know what it’s like to look in the mirror and critique each new wrinkle staring back at you? I bet, if we’re being honest, most of us have secretly wondered at some point in our lives what it would be like if those signs of age could be smoothed over.

Well, the Swiss startup PB&B wants to revolutionize the plastic surgery market—with fat. Their groundbreaking new technology, according to Swiss-Canadian CEO and Co-Founder Anthony Aho, delivers fat to desired locations where it is absorbed naturally, plumping and filling over time. It also lasts longer than other comparable cosmetic techniques.

Aho, a bioengineer and entrepreneur currently in residence at swissnex San Francisco, tells us more:

Q: Hi Anthony, tell us a little about PB&B and its products.

A: PB&B is a Swiss biotech startup developing a new generation of fillers and anti-aging remedies for plastic surgeons and dermatologists. As we age, fat tissues decrease and lose volume causing the face to sag and wrinkles to appear. Our fillers add volume to fat tissues and thus diminish facial lines, but could also be used for natural and non-surgical body shaping (breasts or buttocks).

Q: How does your product work?

A: Our patented technology stimulates a patient’s soft tissues to naturally gain volume by absorbing locally delivered lipids, or fat molecules, which reverse the aging process.

A patient receives an injection of small balls, called microspheres, filled with lipids. Over time, the microsphere reacts with the body’s own water, causing it to break down and release the lipids, which are absorbed and stored in the body’s surrounding fat cells where they fill wrinkles and deep fat tissues.

Q: How is this process natural?

A: After the product is applied to the designated area, it splits up into two components, which are produced naturally in our body. The injection is therefore well tolerated by the body and does not trigger any side effects or significant immune reaction.

Another advantage is that our product, as soon as it’s injected, breaks down into two completely natural components found in every human body.

Q: How do you make sure the body’s fat cells don’t grow too much?

A: When you inject the product you know exactly how the volume and quantity of it will affect the cells—it’s simple biology. Because the components we’re using have been on the market already for quite a while, we know exactly how they affect the body.

Q: What sets your product apart from the competitors?

A: We are the first to target and use fat tissues in situ (directly in the patient) to bring truly natural results. This leads to longer lasting benefits than with conventional products (the most popular is hyaluronic acid) because we get down to the root of the aging process: the decrease of fat cells and the loss of volume.

Two months after the injection there is nothing left except your own tissues, now a little bigger or with the wrinkles smoothed out. Risks caused by other methods, such as taking fat from another part of the body and re-injecting it somewhere else, can be avoided due to its non-surgical nature.

Q: So when can we expect your product to be on the market?

A: We are currently pursing pre-clinical studies together with EPFL and the University Hospitals of Geneva. Clinical studies are set to begin in 2016.

With the help of the great network swissnex San Francisco offers, I am here in the Silicon Valley to establish contacts with potential investors as well as knowledgeable people from the medical industry so we can find out where we want to do our clinical studies, in Europe or the US.

Do you like PB&B’s idea? If so, support it.