Banking of umbilical cord blood stem cells
An increasing number of families worldwide are choosing to store their newborn’s cord blood for the safety of knowing that should the need arise, the stored cord blood would be readily available for use in a potential therapeutic application.
There are also those who have an existing medical need, such as a family history of disease or a family member who is sick with a condition that would use cord blood stem cells as part of a therapeutic treatment.
Storing cord blood increases the chance that if someone in your family needs a stem cell transplant, they can use stem cells from a relative.
1. Haemopoietic stem cells from cord blood
- Umbilical cord blood is the blood contained in a newborn’s umbilical cord and placenta following birth. This blood is a highly rich source of haematopoietic stem cells, the building blocks of the blood and immune system.
- Haematopoietic stem cells found in umbilical cord blood differentiate to become red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.
- Stem cells are currently being used in the treatment of over 40 different diseases. As more research is conducted on stem cell applications, there is encouraging evidence suggesting that in the future, stem cells will become the basis for regenerative medicine and the treatment of an increasing number of diseases.
2. Mesencymal stem cells from cord tissue
- Mesenchymal stem cells can be isolated from umbilical cord tissue. Mesenchymal stem cells comprise a population of stem cells that has been found in the laboratory to be able to differentiate into a number of different cell types, like bone cells, muscle cells and cartilage cells. This biological characteristic of mesenchymal stem cells makes them ideal candidates for applications in regenerative medicine and stem cell therapies to develop in the years to come.
- Lifebank provides the chance for future parents to cryopreserve mesenchymal stem cells isolated from the newborn’s umbilical cord tissue.
What are Stem Cells
- The process is simple, completely safe and painless as there is no contact with either the mother or the newborn. The blood is collected immediately after your baby is born, it takes only a few minutes and does not interrupt the birth experience.
- Following collection the sample is transferred at Lifebank’s laboratory facilities for processing and cryopreservation. Cryopreservation of cord blood is achieved by control rate freezing in order to ensure the viability of the cells and the highest possible percentage of recovery in case the stem cells are needed for use.
- The samples are stored in special liquid nitrogen cryopreservation tanks for the full duration of the cryostorage agreement between Lifebank and the parents.