Findings presented at the 2013 American Society of Haematology by Patrick Stiff showed that by growing umbilical cord stems cells in the laboratory prior to transplantation enables cord stem cells to be used to treat adults.
Few than 50% of eligible patients requiring a stem cell transplant find a matching bone marrow donor. Umbilical cord blood can be an effective alternative however, most adults receive a double dose of cord blood stem cells as there are not enough stem cells in one unit to treat an adult. Now with this new technology, the overall survival rate increased in the study group and the stem cells were quicker to engraft, therefore reducing the time that patients are vulnerable to infections. For more information click here.