Your newborn’s umbilical cord is rich in extraordinary stem cells. Why waste what could one day save their life?
What Are Stem Cells Exactly?
Stem cells are the original cells of the human being with the ability to infinitely transform into many different cell types in the body. They are the foundations of tissues, organs and the entire organism.
Throughout life, they regenerate and repair damaged tissues following injury or illness.
Visit the Health Hub to explore in-depth topics covering everything from stem cells to pregnancy.
What Is Cord Blood?
Cord blood is the blood that remains in the placenta and umbilical cord following the birth of your baby.
It is rich in blood stem cells, similar to those found in bone marrow, and these can be used to treat many different cancers, immune deficiencies and genetic disorders.
Cord blood is rich in blood stem cells, similar to those found in bone marrow, and these can be used to treat many different cancers, immune deficiencies and genetic disorders.
Thanks to expansive scientific research in this field, we are constantly discovering more and more diseases and conditions that can be successfully treated with stem cells found within cord blood.
Blood-producing stem cells (called haematopoietic stem cells) are present in cord blood.
These cells are what we call ‘unspecialised’, which means that they have the ability to develop into those parts of the blood that the patient’s body requires; whether red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets.
What Is Cord Tissue?
Cord tissue is the insulating material (i.e. the Wharton’s jelly) surrounding the vessels of the umbilical cord. Upon delivery, the umbilical cord will be clamped and cut, and a section of the cord can then be saved.
Cord tissue (MSCs) treatments are being developed to help repair bone and cartilage, such as injuries to the knee meniscus or long-term accumulated damage that leads to osteoarthritis.
Studies are further investigating reports that show MSCs help new blood vessels form in damaged tissue. This could have major implications for fixing tissue damaged by heart attacks and diseases.
Researchers are also examining the ability of MSCs to reduce inflammation, slow the progression of autoimmune diseases and prevent transplant rejection.
The cord tissue contains mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that go on to form a person’s nervous system, sensory organs, circulatory tissues, skin, bone, cartilage and more.
A perfect match.
Your child isn’t the only one that can benefit from their stem cells. The cells can potentially be used by siblings and parents, too. In many cord blood treatments, stem cells from a matched family member are preferred.