Cord blood sounds mysterious but it is simply blood that comes from your child’s umbilical cord. Doctors in the past, used to dispose of the umbilical cord as a routine matter, thinking its uses were gone once the baby was born. However, researchers have found that the immature stem cells in umbilical cord blood & cord tissue have miraculous properties and are nothing less than a biological repair kit. Should disease ever strike your child or an immediate family member you can have a powerful weapon against future illness or medical conditions that were once thought incurable.
General Information About Stem Cells
Stem cells are found in all humans and animals. They are cells that can divide into specialized cell types, self-renewing to reproduce themselves. They act as a repair kit for the body, replenishing dying tissues. When a stem cell divides it can remain as it is or become a more specialized cell such as a red blood cell, a brain cell or a muscle cell. They can be targeted towards specific growth and functions to replace damaged or worn out tissues. As you can imagine, the potential for medical treatments is astounding.
What Can Cord Blood Stem Cells Do?
Many diseases and conditions are passed on from generation to generation. They are embedded in our genes and referred to as congenital diseases. Until recently there was little that could be done other than work towards a remission and a few more years of life. Now, with the discoveries being made in stem cell research, doctors can change the very cells in our bodies to affect a cure when they have immature stem cells derived from cord blood & cord tissue.
What Makes Cord Blood Stem Cells so Special?
These stem cells are a biological insurance that reside in the blood of the umbilical cord & placenta, and can be used to alter diseases and conditions once thought hopeless. You see, both cord blood & cord tissue contain immature stem cells that are different from adult stem cells. Adult stem cells are already specialized whereas cord blood stem cells can develop into any type of cell needed.
This process of receiving a stem cell transplant involves strategically injecting immature stem cells within the body where they will grow into the types of cells that are needed to make the body healthy once more. For example: With future advances in stem cell therapies, the stem cells in cord tissue could be used to heal damaged tissue or organs with the use of direct injection.
For instance, bone marrow transplants have had success in the past but since they come from a different body, there is always the chance of rejection. The recipient might have to be on anti-rejection drugs for life. When treated with their own stem cells, or those from an immediate family member, the transplant has a high success rate with little or no danger of rejection. Stem cells from cord blood can be used to treat anyone in the immediate family, not just the child whose umbilical cord was harvested and banked. They have been used in more than 30,000 transplants Worldwide.
Why Cord Blood Over Bone Marrow And Peripheral Donations?
Although transplanting stem cells is a safer and less traumatic procedure, it is not simple. The recipient is subjected to extensive studies and testing but in the end stem cell treatment is safer and more effective than an organ transplant or a bone marrow transplant. While traditional bone marrow or peripheral transplants can be dangerous and ineffective, the worst outcome of a cord blood stem cell transplant is: Nothing. Cord Blood stem cells can’t harm the recipient and the body will not reject them. While the cells in cord blood are not a guarantee of an optimal outcome they are providing hope for people with chronic or congenital diseases. Best of all, stem cell therapy may allow physicians to avoid invasive procedures such as bone marrow transplants or surgical treatment.
The Correct Method Of Storing Cord Blood
In order to use the cord blood it must be stored in a safe and meticulously controlled environment. This is where cord blood banks come into use. USACordBank cryogenically freezes the stem cells and are protected and preserved indefinitely due to the suspension of the molecular state of the stem cells. When you bank with USAcordbank, we collect larger quantities of cord blood by utilizing our enhanced processing for both cord blood and cord tissue.
When you allow your child’s stem cells to be stored at USACordBank, you are taking an important step towards ensuring the future health and happiness of your family.
- Learn More: The Advantages of Cord Blood
- Learn more: Cord Blood vs Cord Tissue
- Learn more: What is Cord Tissue
- Learn More: Public vs Private Cord Banks
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