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June

Graphic of Gamida Cell manufacturing for Omidubicel
Jun 2020   Gamida Cell has demonstrated that a stand-alone transplant of expanded cord blood can dramatically shorten engraftment time. We are entering a second generation of cord blood transplants, using products that will hopefully become a routine option for stem cell transplant patients.

May

How Cord Tissue Changed my Son’s Life
May 2020   Renee tells the story of how her son Gage benefited from infusions of cord tissue MSC to treat his autism. Before the therapy, Gage was non-verbal and seemed "stuck inside his own head". Since the MSC therapy, his language and social skills have noticably improved. Today, Gage is very talkative and plays with other children.
Coronavirus and the Cord Blood Banking Industry
May 2020   The coronavirus pandemic has been both helpful and harmful for the stem cell industry, and cord blood banks in particular. The challenge for companies that bank newborn stem cells is to survive the downsides and take advantage of the new possibilities.

April

Coronavirus During Pregnancy and Cord Blood Banking
Apr 2020   Pregnant women are "at risk"  for severe symptoms from coronavirus and should take extra precautions. Cord Blood and Birth Tissues should not contain COVID-19. It is well established that respiratory viruses do not show up in the blood. A small number of babies may be born with coronavirus if mom is sick at the time of birth, but most newborns do not have it, and most of those that do recover quickly. If mom has had coronavirus and recovered, then her immunity will protect her newborn baby. Inside cord blood laboratories, it is business as usual. The challenges facing cord blood banks during a pandemic are the logistics of shipping samples and protecting their staff.
Actionable Genetic Tests
Apr 2020   Genetic screening and tests are "actionable" when they identify risks for conditions that can be prevented, treated, or managed more efficiently with early detection. Despite great advances in genetic testing, there are discrepancies between the scope and quality of testing available from different providers.

March

Maksim’s Cord Blood Therapy for Autism
Mar 2020   Maksim and his twin sister were born 7 years ago. Despite a normal birth, signs emerged that Maksim had autism: he could not speak and did not interact with people. His mother stayed home to educate the children and the family tried various experimental therapies, but nothing helped. Then, they learned of cord blood therapy for autism. Maksim has been treated with both his own cord blood and his sister’s cord blood. Since the cord blood therapy, Maksim has begun to speak, and is able to attend school. His mother feels a huge burden has been lifted.
Patenting Cord Blood therapy for Cerebral Palsy or Autism
Mar 2020   Duke University has filed for patents on the following stem cell therapies: the use of donor cord blood to treat cerebral palsy, the use of a child's own cord blood to treat autism, as well as the use of cord tissue MSC to treat autism. We explain how patents work in the field of stem cell therapy, and the potential implications of these patents for patient groups.

February

Emma's Story: Spina Bifida Surgery With Cord Blood
Feb 2020   Emma was diagnosed in utero with spina bifida, a birth defect where the spine is not fully closed around the spinal cord. She required surgery right after birth to repair her spine, and during this surgery she received an infusion of her cord blood.
"Tree of Life. Placenta", a painting by Ekaterina Abramova
Feb 2020   Many expectant parents research their options for their child's cord blood - whether to donate it, privately bank it, or have it discarded as medical waste - but what about the placenta? It, too, can be a valuable source of cells that parents should consider saving. (Image credit: painting by Ekaterina Abramova, prints available via Saatchi Art)

January

Perinatal Stem Cell Society 2020 Meetings
Jan 2020   The 2020 annual congress of the Perinatal Stem Cell Society is coming up March 4-6 in Salt Lake City, Utah.  The topics covered in this meeting straddle the edge between what is proven in clinical trials, versus what is actually practiced in clinics, and some of the content may be considered controversial.