World Cord Blood Day 2017 could not have begun better, as news emerged that a successful clinical trial using privately stored cord blood stem cells to treat acquired neurological disorders has opened the door for many more children suffering from Autism and Cerebral Palsy.
Duke University Medical Center has received permission to offer cord blood therapy under an expanded access clinical trial NCT03327467 registered on 31 Oct. 2017. This groundbreaking trial will enable children who have acquired neurological disorders to receive therapy with their own cord blood or cord blood from a sibling, regardless of whether they qualify for a targeted clinical trial.
Provided children have sufficiently matching cord blood stored in a family bank, many will be able to travel to Duke University for cord blood therapy. Sibling therapy only requires a partial match, not a perfect match. This expanded access protocol is a triple win for patients, family cord blood banks, and Duke University Medical Center.
In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the prevalence of cerebral palsy is 1 in 323 children (0.3%) and the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder is 1 in 68 children (1.5%). However, in order to be eligible to participate in the new clinical trial, patients must have their own or a sibling’s cord blood preserved in a family bank. To date, the only study that has examined the prevalence of medical conditions among families with privately stored cord blood is a recent publication that surveyed clients of Cord Blood Registry® (CBR®). The authors found that, out of 94,803 respondent families, 4.23% reported at least one child with an indication for regenerative therapy with cord blood. For conditions similar to autism spectrum disorder and cerebral palsy, the combined prevalence was 2.18%.
Worldwide, there are projected to be tens of thousands of children who are eligible to take advantage of this new treatment pathway. In the United States alone, there are over a million cord blood units in family storage, so that if 2% of the inventory corresponds to children with eligible conditions, that potentially translates into 20,000 patients.
To find out more about Biovault Familycord blood banking services, click here.