Category Archives: Advantages of Donation

Advantages of Donation

Cord Blood: To Donate or To Store?

It’s confirmed stem cells from umbilical cord might help to cure a number of blood-related cancers and few genetic disorders. These diseases cover leukemia, brain cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s, etc.

What many people are debating about is the decision whether to donate the cord blood or store it in private banks. The state law is in favor of public donation but it doesn’t mean private banking is not advantageous. The Cord Blood Registry in San Bruno, California is the largest bank of umbilical cord in the world. Its facilities are guarantee earthquake-and-tsunami free in which more than 300,000 cord blood samples are stored inside the cryo-nitrogen filled container.

Based on a source, CBR couldn’t reveal the number of samples it released for transplant however, in year 2007 alone; only 53 units are used for treatment. This number created a buzz around the world, questioning the necessity of private banking. The truth of the matter is; the ratio of using your cord blood or a sibling’s cord blood is 1:1000 to 1:200,000 depending on what study you read.

Because of this, majority of health experts show support for public donation. Kathy Engle of CBR just replied:

“You can toss around all the statistics you want but it should be a choice that’s left up to the family.”

Comparing the cost with public donation, private banking can be expensive for some. In CBR, it requires you to pay $2000 for the collection and for first year of storage. It will also ask for annual storage fee of $150. While it public banking, you are not given the right to own your cord blood but it doesn’t ask for any collection and storage fees. The access to cord blood is expensive, about $35,000 but the bank’s number of released cord bloods is higher compared to private banks. As of the moment, the number has reached the twenty thousand mark.

Cord Blood Stem Cell vs Embryonic Stem Cell

Cord Blood Awareness Month is celebrated every July. Every couple out there, newlyweds or not, should have the right to be properly informed either to stored their newborn’s umbilical cord or donate it in public cord banks. However, the biggest problem until now is – this simple process of collecting stem cells embraces various misconceptions and controversies. Some people who are not well-informed about this procedure think it is unethical and some mistakenly associate it with embryonic stem cell.

The cord blood stem cells are entirely different from embryonic stem cells. In cord blood, you only use the stem cell found in baby’s umbilical cord. When a baby is delivered, the doctor removes his umbilical cord and placenta. Instead of throwing it away, the blood (which contains stem cells) inside the cord and placenta is squeeze out using a syringe and store in a fridge. Collecting cord blood is a safe procedure and it will not hurt the mother or the baby. In fact, this procedure is performed because scientists confirmed the younger the cells, the bigger the possibilities of curing fatal diseases such as cancer, heart diseases, Parkinson’s, spinal injury, etc.

While in embryonic stem cell, its collection process is complicated. It’s considered unethical because it requires you to kill a life. The nucleus of the embryo cell is removed, transferred to a human egg and results to cloned embryo. The cloned human embryo is developed and destroyed just to harvest the stem cells.

Stem cells can either be found in cord blood or embryonic but when these cells are harvested, it plays similar roles – that is – to cure diseases which many think are irreversible. Embryonic stem cell might be as effective as cord blood cell; It just attempts to give a right solution but its unethical procedures is unacceptable to humanity. It’s unnecessary to destroy a human life just to save another life, right?

Football Players Store Cord Blood for Future Use

So below is a great interview regarding sports stars saving their stem cells for future use….what sorts of use. Well for themselves or offspring in fixing genetic diseases and such. Very interesting use of technology that has only been really used for newborns.

In medicine it’s liquid gold and for sportsmen and women it could mean extending their careers for more years than they can imagine. Cord blood from their own babies is being stored by footballers in England so they have stem cells available for use in possible future cures for cartilage and ligament problems. Sports doctors here say players’ careers are worth so much to them that it’s just a matter of time before they consider using their own babies’ cord blood for a rainy day down the track in the USA.

English Premier League players are reportedly storing stem cells from their newborn babies, as a potential future treatment for their own sports injuries. The Sunday NY Times newspaper reports that five players, including Frenchman Thierry Henri, have stored the blood from their babies’ umbilical cords, as a potential repair kit for themselves.
It’s not happening much in the US yet, but sports doctor Dr Peter Breukner says it’s just a matter of time before it does.

“I haven’t heard of it happening in this country up to now, but people have a lot of time and money invested in their sporting careers, and the one thing that can stop them achieving their ultimate goal is injury, and they will do virtually anything to ensure that they are able to continue their careers.”

Cryosite is the only TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) approved private stem cell storage facility, a sort of cord blood bank where thousands of parents have stored the umbilical cord blood of their babies.

Cryosite’s Professor Ron Penny says “At the moment the best cells to store are the cord cells, because they’re young, fresh, have a very high reproductive capacity, and are extraordinarily efficient in dividing and presumably, in this situation, replacing damaged tissue. We’ve mainly been considering damaged tissue or vital tissues such as heart and so on, but sportspeople and many others will eventually have other ideas and other uses for stem cells that are differentiated.”

According to the Sunday NY Times newspaper, 11,000 British parents have paid up to $4,000 to store their babies’ stem cells in banks to grow tissues.

Professor Ron Penny can see a time when sports stars here will pay to do the same, for the sake of their own careers. He says, “If a sportsperson’s life and career depends on their body, and they really push their body through, and we all know the role of sports medicine, where there’s massive amount of injury that they sustain because of what their body’s put through, I think it’s an imminently possible area, and if it’s being done over in the UK, there’s no reason why it couldn’t be done and couldn’t be stored, on the understanding that the technology has to be confident that it works.”

Blood Cord Investing in Your Baby’s Future

We all know that blood saves lives, and most of us are familiar with the importance of donating blood when and if we can. As medical science has progressed, however, the ways in which blood can be donated, and even the types of blood it is possible to share, have increased, bringing with them a number of issues that society must debate.

All cultures have their own traditions surrounding the process of giving birth, and some of these involve the placenta and umbilical cord, used to allow the transfer of substances between mother and child before birth takes place. While some cultures espouse the ingestion of a mother’s placenta, western medicine has found another use for this organ, or at least for what is contained within.

The placenta and umbilical cord contain a type of blood that is rich with stem cells, which can be used to great benefit in patients suffering from a variety of immune disorders. The most widely known use of such cells is in bone marrow transplants, where patients suffering from cancer receive the bone marrow from a living donor, replacing the unhealthy blood cells of the patient for the life-saving ones of the voluntary donor. The process of bone marrow transplantation can, however, be time consuming, and finding an exact donor match can be difficult.

Cord blood contains a similar type of the stem cells that are found in bone marrow, but the way in which it is donated makes it more readily available for the patient in need. Cord blood, once tested for its suitability, can be stored in a special facility until it is needed – when it can be sent directly to the patient without enduring the time consuming search for a bone marrow donor.

Cord blood donation raises a number of issues. Public cord blood storage units are not always available to the parents who wish to donate their baby’s blood. While parents can choose to store the cord blood privately for their baby’s later use, this can be expensive, and raises the question of whether the blood should wait for someone who might never use it or be given immediately to a patient in need.

For the moment, this remains the choice of the parents, who can choose to save their baby’s cord blood, if they can afford to pay the price. Like all insurance policies, it might be one taken out with the hope that it never needs to be called in, but society continues to ask whether this is a policy whose benefits should be shared.

About the author:
Dave is the owner of and websites providing information on umbilical cord bloo

Stem Cells Offer Leukaemia Patients Hope

New technology exists to treat leukemia patients with stem cell technology using cord blood.

The problem is that it’s hard to find a bone marrow match for these patients. But this problem is starting to get fixed by using the blood from a newborn baby.

Also known as ‘cord blood’, this transplant was only used in kids before because scientists thought that the blood didn’t contain enough of the needed stem cells to replenish the circulatory system and thus fight leukemia. They were wrong because a new study by the New England Journal of Medicine says that there IS enough stem cells in cord blood to treat an adult.

This is really great because the study found that this new treatment provides a better success rates then a mismatched marrow type transplant.

More and more research needs to be done. But, all in all…it’s a great step for stem cell technology to incorporate the cord blood stockpiles that are out there to save peoples lives.

Cord Blood Donation Advantages


Rich in haematopoietic (blood-making) stem cells, cord blood can be frozen, stored, and used later, which makes it a better source of stem cells than bone marrow. Cord blood is also a better source of stem cells for transplantation because it is available when the patient needs it as opposed to when a matching donor can be identified and available for the patient.

Cord blood has advantages over bone marrow. Unlike the stem cells contained in bone marrow, the stem cells found in cord blood are immature and more easily adapt to the new host. This makes for a reduction in the occurrence of Graft Versus Host Disease.

Another benefit of using cord blood is that it is easily collected. An expectant mother arranges for her physician to collect the sample at the time of delivery. After the birth of the child, the umbilical cord is clamped, cut, and separated from the baby. While waiting for the placenta to deliver, the physician collects the cord blood. The whole process is painless and non-invasive, and it makes life-saving use of what has been traditionally considered medical waste. The collected sample is then sent to a specialized facility such as the St. Louis Cord Blood Bank for typing, storage, and registering availability to transplant centers around the world. Cord-blood stem cells are considered “purer” than adult stem cells because, being new and having existed in the closed system of the umbilical cord and placenta, they have not suffered the same exposure to disease and contamination as that of adult stem cells. If tests prove the sample unsuitable for transplantation, the sample still offers a valuable opportunity for research.

Those interested in donating their own baby’s cord blood should call the Cord Blood Donor Foundation (CBDF) for an information form. Important – this should take place 60 days before the due date! After sending in the form, if the cord blood is approved, at the proper time, the CBDF sends a kit to the mom. At the time of delivery, the kit is taken to the hospital or remains ready in the home in case of a homebirth. When the cord blood has been harvested using the syringes in the kit and all is labelled, the kit is ready to mail. The CBDF has even taken care of postage! Basically, that is all the effort expended by the mom and if all goes well, a child with leukaemia can live