May 13, 2015

When an expecting mother makes the decision to store her child’s cord blood during her stages of pregnancy, she is making an investment in the future of her child. Currently, cord blood is known to effectively treat more than 80 diseases, and FDA-regulated clinical studies are currently underway to research treatment for many more diseases, including: autism, cerebral palsy, pediatric stroke, acquired hearing loss, or traumatic brain injuries. These conditions currently have no cure through regenerative medicine. What is stem cell research? It is finding cures for these conditions through umbilical cord blood banking.

A 2010 study found that stem cells found in umbilical cord blood improved the neurologic function of lab rats after an acute spinal cord injury. The rats in the study improved recovery of their motor function in 6 weeks, compared to rats that did not receive the stem cell treatment. Continued stem cell research will hopefully make treatment of spinal cord injuries through cord blood possible in human patients.

Cord blood can currently be used for anemia treatment, and may be able to treat lung disease in the future, which is why expecting mothers should decide to store their child’s cord blood during their stages of pregnancy. Stem cell research has shown that mesenchymal cells, which are found in umbilical cord blood, can possibly significantly reduce lung inflammation in infants who suffer from bronchopulmonary dysplasia, a lung disease that effects premature infants who receive oxygen supplementation and ventilator support to treat respiratory conditions. This can possibly save the lives of many children, which is why umbilical cord blood research is an area to pay attention to and why expecting mothers should consider saving their child’s cord blood during their stages of pregnancy.

While umbilical cord blood banking can also play a key role in treating certain types of cancers and anemia treatment, stem cell research is currently underway to investigate the possibility of using cord blood stem cells to treat stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, peripheral artery occlusive disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and liver disease. In the future, cord blood could also possibly be used in bone repair, heart repair, and wound healing in diabetics caused by nerve damage, poor circulation, or complications within a patient’s immune system.

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