Cord Blood Stem Cells
Cord blood (CB) has been established as a viable source of donor cells for hematopoietic reconstitution in allogeneic transplantation for all of the clinical indications treated with adult hematopoietic stem cells. CB is the only hematopoietic stem cell source that is banked and regulated by the US food and Drug Administration and similar agencies in the global community. The ready availability of CB, its ability to deliver high cell doses to pediatric patients, and the high incidence of full donor chimerism and normal posttransplant enzyme levels make it an especially attractive option for children with inherited metabolic disorders that affect the brain. CB also has the potential for use in treating acquired brain injuries, although its efficacy has yet to be clearly proven in clinical trials. Looking ahead, CB and CB-derived products hold promise for use in the emerging fields of cellular therapies and regenerative medicine. Although results are preliminary, early studies create hope for CB-derived cellular therapies as novel treatments for diseases that cause lifelong disabilities and currently have no curative options.