Stem Cell 101

  • Stem Cell Therapy Using Umbilical Blood Cord Stem Cells:

 A stem cell is a cell that has the ability to renew itself and differentiate into other kinds of cells. There are many types of stem cells, some of which are more valuable from a medical point of view than others. The most therapeutically valuable stem cells, called hematopoietic stem cells (HSC), are found in the greatest numbers in the cord blood of newborns. Cord blood is collected from the umbilical cord and placenta immediately following a child’s birth.                   

HSCs can replace bone marrow by differentiating into cells that can produce red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. These new cells produce the cellular ingredients necessary for the blood and the immune system and can rapidly create new blood for a patient. HSCs are currently being used to treat over 80 different blood, immune, and bone diseases.

Cord blood stem cells are biologically younger and are more flexible compared to adult stem cells from other sources like bone marrow. These stem cells can heal the body, promote recovery, and offer an enormous amount of therapeutic potential.

   

  • Are there any ethical issues with these biologics?

No! There are not. None of the biologic materials come from “aborted fetuses”. During the biologic acquisition, the babies are fine and the material donated and used is normally discarded.

In addition, no embryonic stem cells are used in the US anymore legally. There is no fetal tissue, no cloning and all donors are consented and screened according to FDA regulations.

So, what this means is there are NO ethical concerns with the materials being used from the products of conception.

  

  • What is the difference between cord blood and cord tissue stem cells?

The physical tissue of the umbilical cord, (not to be confused with the cord blood that is drained from the umbilical cord), contains mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). MSCs are a different type of stem cell than those that are collected from cord blood in the umbilical cord because they are tissue-based and can proliferate into skin, connective tissue, bones, cartilage, and even organs. The type of stem cells that exist in great numbers in cord blood are called hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and they are blood-based stem cells.

   

Learn More

  

Discover the possibilities of stem cells for the future of medicine. Umbilical cord blood, umbilical cord tissue, placenta tissue provide infinite possibilities for the future of medicine. 

The topics of stem cells and stem cell therapies continue to be incredibly intriguing for scientists, doctors and the general public alike. Every year, medical research into stem cells and treatments based on stem cell therapies are increasing at a dramatic rate.

Stem Cell Vocabulary Cheat Sheet

Stem Cells

 A general term referring to cells in the body that are able to develop into various kinds of cells, such as blood cells, skin cells, muscle, nerve, organs, bone and more. Their exceptional ability to become other types of cells makes them essential in repairing and renewing every kind of tissue and body organ. 

Mesenchymal Stem Cell (MSCs):

 A type of stem cell that can become any of a number of tissue types, including bone, cartilage, fat tissue, and connective tissue. MSCs are found in the bone marrow of adults and the cord tissue and placenta tissue of newborn babies.    

Multipotent Stem Cell:

 A type of stem cell that can become any of the cells that make up the organ system that they originated from. Hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells are both multipotent stem cells.    

Adult Stem Cells:

 Refers to stem cells found throughout a fully developed body. Adult stem cells are a type of multipotent stem cell.  

Hematopoietic Stem Cell (HSCs):

 A type of stem cell that can become any of the blood cells and cellular blood components in the body, including white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. HSCs are found in the bone marrow of adults and the umbilical cord blood of newborn babies.   

Pluripotent Stem Cell:

 A type of stem cell that can become  A type of stem cell that can become any type of cell or tissue in the body except those that form a placenta or embryo. Pluripotent stem cells are found in the placenta.