Did you know that stem cells were first discovered in the human Cord Blood as early as 1978? This was ten years after the first successful bone marrow transplant was done between siblings, according to an article published in the Journal of Natural Science, Biology and Medicine. Although the concept of stem cell research is not new, having been established as a field of medical research in 1998, it remains a domain that not many people are aware of, or have accurate information about.
October 14, 2015 is slated to be celebrated as Stem Cell Awareness Day. So, learn more about this revolutionary and potentially life-saving area of medicine.
Things You Must Know About Stem Cells
Types of Transplants: Broadly speaking, there are two different types of transplants that are possible within the purview of Stem Cell Therapy. These are autologous, i.e., they are done using the person’s own stem cells, or Allogenic, which borrows stem cells from another person who has similar Human Leucocyte antigens as the recipient. Both kinds have exhibited high potential in regenerative medicine.
Diseases it has Cured: Over 80 diseases have been cured successfully with this form of treatment, including acute leukemia, Myelodysplastic Syndrome, Plasma Cell Disorders, Inherited Metabolic Disorders, Hystiocytic disorders, Retinal Disorders, Parkinson’s Disease and many more.
Diseases it can cure: There are several fields in which the potential of Stem Cell Therapy can be harnessed. One of the most relevant areas for Indians is that it has been attributed with the potential to cure Type 1 Diabetes. They could also be used to cure chronic heart diseases, since these cells are able to regenerate damaged portions of the organ. Likewise, they could also be beneficial in Alzheimer’s, Arthritis or any other disease that is caused by degeneration over the years.
Cryopreservation: Cryopreservation is the method through which cells and tissues can be preserved by cooling to subzero temperatures. Using this method, cord blood banks can preserve the Stem Cells from the Umbilical Blood collected at birth and store it for several years. According to recent studies, successful recovery has been possible from cells that were cryopreserved for over 23 years!
In addition, not only are Cord Blood cells life saving for the person whose blood it is, it could also be used to cure siblings or other relatives who have genetic similarities with the donor. These are only some of the reason why you should consider Cord Blood Banking for your unborn child.