What is cord blood?

 

Cord blood is the blood left over in the blood vessels of the placenta and umbilical cord after the child’s birth and it contains a large number of haematopoietic stem cells. The placenta and the blood within it are destroyed after the delivery.

After the delivery of the child, blood containing a large number of haematopoietic cells similar to the cells from bone marrow remains in the blood vessels of the placenta and umbilical cord. These cells can generate all types of blood cells (red blood cells, leukocytes, platelets). Since they can regenerate bone marrow, these cells can be transplanted instead of bone marrow cells to treat haematological diseases and severe immune system deficiencies. The placenta is destroyed after delivery. Due to its biological capacity, the blood remaining in the placenta started to be procured and stored on a long-term basis on very low temperatures. Up until today, over 600,000 doses of cord blood have been stored worldwide in public banks, with numbers growing each day. Thanks to that, over 14,000 haematopoietic cord blood stem cell transplantations have been performed.