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Your Baby’s Cord Blood Used As Regenerative Medicine

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By Author: Navya Sharma
Total Articles: 5
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Umbilical cord blood and placenta blood both contain progenitor hematopoietic cells (HPCs)–the stem cells that produce blood cells. The same type of cells is found in the bone marrow of adults where it maintains our blood cell population. Cord blood stem cells can treat various medical problems such as sickle cell anemia, leukemia and other diseases that affect the production of the immune system or blood cells. Diseases that destroy cells of the body may also require donor cells to replace the cells that have been destroyed.

So far, researchers have grown stem cells collected from the baby’s cord blood and infused into the patient who needs a transplant to avoid the problem of damaged cells. These are called "pluripotent stem cells induced" (iPSCs). With iPSCs, researchers expect to diminish the body's chances of rejecting these cells as the recipient's immune system tends to act against donor tissue as a potential pathogen. Even this route, however, has been fraught with many obstacles and, surprisingly, even stem cells that are regularly faced with rejection by specialists from a person's own cells.

Scientists frequently claim the ability of pluripotent stem cells is that they can grow into any adult cells, but the immune system becomes a major obstacle to secure and effective stem cell therapies. Regenerative medicine uses cells, biological components to treat cells of the body that gets damaged due to disease or injury.

Regenerative medicine "is designed to replace or renew cells or to regenerate tissue as well as organs in order to refurbish normal function." The importance of stem cells can be distinguished from many commonly used drugs in means of treatment that tend to treat symptoms but do not address the core causes.

In case of extreme burns and scald injuries, stem cell therapy can also be used when a patient does not have sufficient undamaged skin for treatment with a skin graft. At this time the skin cells are isolated from a small biopsy; the stem cells are processed and expanded. In a comparatively short time, millions of cells can be grown and transplanted to the burn wound to accelerate healing.

Scientific advancements are recognized as innovations in stem cell research and umbilical cord preservation in India. However, a breakthrough study does not mean a new therapy, often leading to a conflict between public expectations and the speed at which new therapies can be developed.

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