New Cord Blood Trials at Duke


This month Duke Medical Center announced that they have received a large infusion of grant funding to launch an ambitious series of clinical trials, starting with a study where children receive their own cord blood for autism.

The lead investigators on the trials are Joanne Kurtzberg M.D., head of Duke's Robertson Cell and Translational Therapy Program, and Geraldine Dawson Ph.D., director of the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development.

The prevalence of autism has been rising around the world. In the USA the CDC reports that 1 in 68 children age eight years old are on the autism spectrum. It is more common among boys, where the frequency is 1 in 42.  Existing biomedical therapies for autism are supportive, but not curative.

The new trials build on the past decade of cord blood research at Duke, where hundreds of children have received cord blood therapy for acquired neurological disorders such as cerebral palsy.

The new trials will begin using donated cord blood to treat children with acquired neurological disorders, so that kids whose parents did not store their cord blood at birth will also have access to this therapy.

Over a five year span the new trials plan to treat 390 children and adults with autism, 100 children with cerebral palsy and 90 adults who had a stroke.

These trials could change the playing field of cord blood banking. They have the potential to both increase consumer demand for family storage and provide new indications for use of donated cord blood.

Read more about the back story of the trial funding and the future plans of Dr. Kurtzberg's group here.

Previous articles :

15-Sep-2015 -    Interview with Matt Farrow
25-Jan-2015 -    AABB Partnership
03-Jun-2014 - Parent's Guide partners with FACT-NetCord
28-May-2014 - Sir Richard Branson's cord blood bank saves boy
30-Apr-2014 - WSJ: Inside the Private Umbilical Cord Blood Banking Business
19-Feb-2014 - Cost of Cord Blood Therapy for Cerebral Palsy
06-Jan-2014 - Jennifer Jones Austin puts focus on cord blood
10-Dec-2013 - - Weighing Cord Blood Donation Against Private Banks
01-Dec-2013 - Medical Device for Cord Blood Collection
14-Jan-2013 - Dr. Jennifer Arnold endorsement
24-Dec-2012 - Cord Blood for Cerebral Palsy: 1st publication of controlled trial
09-Oct-2012 - After iPS Nobel Prize, who needs cord blood?
17-May-2011 - Meet our Advisory Panel
14-Jul-1998 - Shai's Story