If you’re interested in stem cell banking, be wary about a lot of false information out there. To make an informed decision on umbilical cord blood collection, read the following five facts that you should know.
TRUE or FALSE?
Cord blood is a recognized method of treatment
Stem cells from umbilical cord blood are used in the treatment of 80 serious diseases. In 2018, we celebrated the 30th anniversary of the first umbilical cord blood transplantation (8 October 1988). Since then, over 40,000 transplants have been completed worldwide.
Umbilical cord blood has a greater regenerative potential than bone marrow
Cells from umbilical cord blood have a ten times stronger regenerative capacity than bone marrow. What's more, they are characterized by a lower immunological maturity, which ensures that their transplantation results in fewer complications in the recipient (in the case of allogeneic transplantation, there is less risk of rejection of the graft).
Acquiring umbilical blood does not affect the course of labor
Umbilical cord blood is harvested only after the umbilical cord is clamped. The decision on when to cut the cord should be taken by the midwife and doctor, taking into account current medical knowledge, information on the course of pregnancy and childbirth, health of the mother and child, mother’s preferences and standards at the ward.
Cells do not lose their properties after freezing
Experiments conducted by American scientists confirmed that stem cells retained their unique abilities (multiplication and formation of colonies) after 24 years of storage in a state of deep freezing (-196 °C). Theoretically, stem cells may be stored with a cryoprotectant in such conditions indefinitely, without compromising the quality of the preparation.
We also carry out umbilical cord blood transplantations in Poland
In Poland, stem cell therapy is gaining in popularity. Currently, there are already seven centers that may transplant umbilical cord blood stem cells and ten centers able to transplant stem cells from the umbilical cord (mainly used in regenerative medicine). Cells secured at a family bank allow for a quick start of treatment (shortened time even up to 2 months), because there is no need to look for a donor.