Umbilical cord blood is a fantastic source of stem cells
Umbilical cord blood contains unique stem cells called haematopoietic stem cells; HSCs. These specialised cells can reproduce into the types of cells found in the blood. This means they can treat life-threatening blood diseases like leukaemia’s, anaemia’s and thalassemia’s. To date there are more than 85 different diseases that can be treated with HSC’s from umbilical cord blood.
As the HSC’s found in cord blood are particularly naive due to being essentially left over after the birth of your baby, this makes them highly desirable for use in stem cell transplantation as they can be transplanted with less adverse effects than other forms of stem cell treatment. They also offer a higher chance of a match to family members than cells obtained from other sources.
Collecting and storing these stem cells for your child is a once in a lifetime opportunity that is risk free, the cells are only collected after your baby is born and the umbilical cord has been cut. This ensures nothing about this procedure is dangerous for you or your baby.
Future Health Biobank has released cord blood samples for treatment in the USA, Europe and the Middle East. These samples have been used to treat conditions such as Fanconi’s Anaemia, Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID) and Beta Thalassemia.