Stem cell storage or banking refers to collecting and cryopreserving stem cells. These stem cells are collected from the umbilical cord tissue or blood in order to be used in future treatments and clinical trials. You can store either with a private bank or a public bank. When stored in a private bank, the stem cells will be available for exclusive use by the donor and their family members. When stored in a public bank, the stem cells will be available for anyone to use.

Are storing cord tissue and cord blood different?

The umbilical cord blood contains a lot of stem cells, which include Haematopoietic Stem Cells. These cells are currently used by doctors for the treatment of numerous types of immune disorders and cancers. In clinical trials, doctors also use Mesenchymal Stem Cells, which form tissues in the body. These cells are of immense use in regenerative therapies.

Mesenchymal Stem Cells are also found in the umbilical cord tissue. Umbilical cord tissue is valuable as it is a source of various other types of stem cells that are not found in cord blood. Scientists are currently studying these stem cells in clinical trials for their potential use in different therapies. You can give your child the best chance of treatment by storing cord blood and cord tissue stem cells.

Is it necessary that stem cells from each of your child’s birth are stored?

Stem cells collected at the time of your child’s birth are likely to be an accurate match for his/her siblings. The likelihood is even higher that these cells will at least be a usable match for them. So, storing the stem cells of any one of your children will offer protection to them and their siblings. It’s better than not choosing stem cell storage at all. To ensure a perfect match between your children’s stem cells, it is important to consider all of your children for stem cell storage.

How are stem cells used?

When you choose to store your baby’s cord blood, they get access to many treatment options throughout your life. In today’s time, using cord blood for stem cell storage is utterly important as the cells can be used to treat a multitude of immune-related and blood diseases such as Leukaemia and Neuroblastoma.

In numerous clinical trials, stem cells are being tested for their potential usefulness in regenerative therapies. This includes many incurable conditions like heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and brain injury.

What is the cost of stem cell banking?

Stem cells storage costs vary from country to country and from organization to organization. Some stem cell storage service providers also offer extra services like storage of your baby’s umbilical cord tissue and blood in multiple units. This is to ensure that the stem cell package is as complete as possible. 

Why should you go for stem cell banking?

Stem cells are used to repair and replace cells in the body. Stem cells can be divided and transformed into many types of cells. A stem cell transplant can be used for individuals who are unable to produce healthy cells. Most stem cells are produced by the bone marrow. Sometimes stem cell generation can stop because of treatments or illnesses that affect their production in the bone marrow.

Since stem cells are also present in cord blood, stem cells collected from cord blood are as effective for treatment as those collected from the bone marrow. There are many benefits to using stem cells from cord blood over bone marrow, such as the convenience of collection, better matches, less time of processing, higher chances of transplant success.

Which diseases can be treated with stem cells collected from cord blood?

Cord blood stem cells can treat more than 80 different diseases. These diseases include blood disorders, cancers, genetic and metabolic conditions. Stem cell transplants have been successful in treating life-threatening conditions like leukaemia, sickle cells disease, and Hurler syndrome.

Why is stem cell storage so important?

Current research focuses on the effectiveness of cord blood in treating neurological disorders like Autism and cerebral palsy. Cord blood stem cells can also be used to treat auto-immune diseases such as Crohn’s Disease and type-1 Diabetes. Apart from that, cardiovascular conditions like myocardial Infarction and cardiomyopathy, and inherited diseases such as HIV also improve significantly. These stem cells are also often used to treat orthopaedic conditions like knee cartilage repair.

Is the process of cord blood collection painful for the baby?

The baby, after birth, can no longer use the umbilical cord and placenta because birth involves cutting them, which the doctor usually discards. Your cord blood banking service provider can quickly and painlessly collect blood from the cord if you choose to bank it. It doesn’t matter if you have a vaginal or c-section birth.