A few days ago I was invited to an event here in NYC to learn more about cord blood banking with ViaCord. ViaCord is a leading private family cord blood bank that has been providing high-quality stem cell and tissue preservation services to families for 20 years. Their mission is to provide the highest quality stem cell preservation service and care for their patients, families, and physicians. ViaCord is dedicated to advancing the science of cord blood stem cells. They collaborate with leading hospitals and researchers across the country. Part of PerkinElmer, a global company focused on improving human and environmental health, ViaCord has the highest published treatment success rates out of any cord blood banking company!
What is cord blood banking?
Both cord blood and cord tissue are great sources of stem cells, which have the ability to heal damaged cells, tissues, organs, blood and the immune system. Cord blood is the blood that remains in a newborn’s umbilical cord after birth, and the stem cells it contains have been used to help replace damaged blood cells with healthy ones, with the potential to strengthen the immune system. Cord blood and cord tissue stem cells are collected at the time of the birth by the health care provider and stored at a ViaCord facility.
What kind of choices did you have to make when you were pregnant?
So many decisions to make while pregnant. What information do you wish you had at the time that would have made those choices easier? Choosing the right doctors and birthing plan was a huge decision for me. You want what will be best for the baby! It took me months to even choose what kind of stroller and car seat I wanted to get! I’m happy with how everything turned out with my daughter’s birth; however, the next time around I definitely want to bank my child’s cord blood.
Why bank cord blood?
Cord blood stem cells are the fastest growing source of stem cells in pediatric transplants, and have been used in the treatment of nearly 80 diseases, including lymphoma and leukemia. The number of diseases treated by cord blood stem cells has doubled since 2007, and thanks to ongoing research, the potential for treatment continues to grow. To date, over 30,000 cell transplants have been performed. Clinical trials are being conducted to test the utility of autologous (a child’s own) umbilical cord blood stem cell infusions to treat autism, cerebral palsy, and type 1 diabetes84. Cord tissue stem cells are now in preclinical (not human) trials for a number of conditions20-26. There is a high likelihood that biological family members could benefit from the baby’s cord tissue stem cells, because parents have a 100% likelihood and siblings a 75% likelihood of being a match16, 50. Cord tissue stem cells are not yet approved for treatment, but saving cord tissue stem cells means more potential treatment options in the future.
I wish I knew about cord blood banking before I had my daughter! I love that ViaCord is all about moving the cord blood industry forward! Though it is an extra cost to add on to your baby’s birth plan, I think it is such a great investment! You can even create a registry with ViaCord and have friends and family help contribute to banking your newborns cord blood. Did you know? ViaCord recently lowered the upfront price of cord blood banking by 40%! More opportunities for people to bank! Happy and hopeful for the future of cord blood banking!