Umbilical Cord Blood Bank
Cord blood is obtained after the umbilical cord has been cut. The blood is frozen and can be stored in cord blood banks either privately or be donated to public cord blood banks. Cord blood is a much richer source of stem cells than bone marrow or peripheral stem cells. The stem cells obtained from cord blood are much more primitive than the stem cells from bone marrow or peripheral stem cells. Stem cells from cord blood have several advantages as compared to over stem cells obtained form bone marrow during transplantation.
What is cord blood
Umbilical cord is the source that supplies nutrients, oxygen and immunity to your child in the womb. The blood obtained from the cord after the baby is born is called the cord blood.
What is cord blood bank
Umbilical Cord blood bank is a kind of blood bank that stores and preserves stem cells obtained from the cord blood. Cord blood is obtained from your newborn's umbilical cord after his or her birth in the first 5 minutes. This is one and the only opportunity to obtain cord blood. Cord blood is a very rich source of stem cells. The stem cells obtained from cord blood are much more primitive than the stem cells obtained from other sources. These stem cells have the capability to divide indefinitely and transform into specialized cells. They have the potential to treat many life threatening diseases.
Why bank cord blood stem cells
The arrival of a new born brings boundless joy for the family. A wish that ever body has for the baby is that he or she should have a long and a healthy life. Your decision to store your baby’s cord blood can possibly be a lifeline which can probably help to treat a long list of life threatening diseases in years to come. Cord blood is a rich source of stem cells which are much more primitive than the stem cells obtained from bone marrow or peripheral stem cells.
Cord blood is obtained from your newborn's umbilical cord after his or her birth in the first 5 minutes. This is one and the only opportunity to obtain cord blood. The cord blood stem cells have the capability to divide indefinitely and transform into specialized cells and the immunological rejection risk after transplant is minimal. If you have a family history of diseases such as blood cancers or you are from a ethnical minorities or mixed ethnical families that has a history of immunological or other diseases saving baby’s cord blood can prove to be a significant life saving decision as finding a matching donor at the time of transplant can be difficult.
Umbilical cord blood has been used for more than thousands of transplantations in children and adults up till now. This has made cord blood stem cells an important biological resource tool and several studies are being done to use umbilical cord blood stem cells for diseases like Alzheimer's, Diabetes, Heart and Liver Disease, Muscular Dystrophy, Parkinson's Disease, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke in future.
Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Feb 24, 2011
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