Nov 7 2013

Harvard Researchers Successfully Expand Cord Blood Stem Cells

Posted by Martin Smithmyer

In phase 1 of a clinical trial at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI), Harvard researchers attempted to expand the stem cells in umbilical cord blood to improve transplant success.

About The Study

The researchers were trying to show that a molecule 16-dimethyl prostaglandin E2 (or “dmPGE2”), which was discovered while studying blood formation in zebra fish, is able to expand the number of stem cells found in cord blood. This development is significant since, low cell count drastically limits the utility of umbilical cord blood today. The researchers found evidence that the molecule was able to expand the stem cells in cord blood by 300-400%. The study will now enter phase 2 where they will increase the number of test subjects from 12 to 60, results from this phase 2 should be available within 24 months.

What did The Harvard Researchers Find?

The study is significant because one of the major limitations of cord blood today is that low volume collections are difficult and often impossible to use for adults, expanding the cells and improving transplant capabilities could one day help resolve this. Americord is very focused on this issue; Americord developed a proprietary product that has contributed to the  solving the small collection dilemma.

Cord Blood 2.0 was developed by Americord in an effort to collect additional hematopoietic cells from the umbilical cord blood. This innovative technology can collect up to twice as many stem cells as the industry average. This means there are more treatment opportunities throughout the years. Because cell count can limit the usability of cord blood collections we follow a benchmark that all of our collections should be at least 100 million nucleated cells. If your collection were to fall below our benchmark, Americord will contact you with the option not to store your cord blood stem cells; if you decided not to store, you would not be charged for our service.

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