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Jul 2014 Umbilical cord blood has been identified as a rich source of blood-forming stem cells that can be used to restore normal blood development following blood stem cell transplantation. In particular, umbilical cord blood is most commonly used in pediatric patients undergoing blood stem cell transplantation for blood cancers such as leukemia and for the treatment of rare inherited metabolic disorders.
Jun 2014 Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is an inherited disease of red blood cells caused by a gene mutation involving a single amino acid substitution in the hemoglobin gene. The red blood cells become sickle shaped (see figure below) under stress conditions, leading the cells to stick together and block tiny blood vessels. This can cause pain crises, stroke, and chronic progressive organ damage.
Jun 2014 Cord Blood transplants have come of age. Nearly 26 years after the first cord blood transplant in Oct. 1988, over 650,000 umbilical cord blood units have been stored in public banks for transplants worldwide, and over 3 million cord blood units are stored in family cord blood banks all over the world (Reference: Parent's Guide to Cord Blood Foundation). Over 30,000 cord blood transplants have been performed globally.
Jun 2014 Be The Cure is an initiative of Jeevan Blood Bank (www.jeevan.org), a not for profit organization in Chennai, India. Be The Cure is the first public cord blood bank set up in India, enabling quick and affordable (free for the poor) access to matching stem cells from donated umbilical cord blood for the life-saving treatment of Indians with blood cancers, thalassaemia, and other blood disorders.
May 2014 We report on a pioneer program in México City designed to educate expectant mothers about both cord blood donation and private storage, made possible by the cooperation, to mutual benefit, of public and private institutions. Cordón Vital, a private (family) cord blood bank active in México City since 2001, together with Médica Sur Lomas Woman's Hospital, a private obstetric hospital (formerly Hospital Santa Teresa), formed an alliance in April 2007 with the public cord blood bank of the México Social Security Institute (IMSS) that was founded in 2005.
May 2014 Omega-3 fatty acids are called "essential" because they are required for a healthy metabolism. Humans and other mammals must ingest the simplest essential fatty acids in their diet, because their bodies cannot synthesize them. The best dietary source is fish oil. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is a more complex fatty acid that our bodies can manufacture to a limited extent.
May 2014 Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC) are being widely studied in research and in clinical trials. Their useful properties include the ability to modulate the patient's immune system, promote cell growth, and to differentiate into more specialized cell types. This amazing potential has been explored in a large scope of diagnoses such as graft versus host disease (GvHD), rheumatoid arthritis, cardiomyopathy, liver cirrhosis, Alzheimer's, spinal cord injury, chronic wounds, and diabetes among many others [1,2].
Apr 2014 During the last 25 years, stem cells derived from umbilical cord blood have been used in more than 30,000 transplants performed worldwide for the treatment of over 80 diseases and disorders in both adults and children. The evolution of stem cell therapies has paved the way for further research being conducted through FDA-regulated clinical trials to uncover their potential in regenerative medicine applications.
Apr 2014 The Hearing Loss Association of America® (HLAA) is the nation's foremost membership and advocacy organization for people with hearing loss. The mission of HLAA is to open the world of communication for people with hearing loss through information, education, support and advocacy.
Apr 2014 This simple question has been lingering unanswered over private cord blood banks around the world for years. Despite compelling data on the growing therapeutic use of cord blood, both in terms of treatable diseases and numbers of therapies, often medical doctors are still reluctant to embrace the value of family cord blood banking. In many countries, such as Brazil, this sector is still plagued with mostly unfounded controversy, such as the "public versus private" banking debate.