Cord blood & cord tissue
Baby Stem Cell Banking
Baby stem cell storage and banking can be a great way to protect your child’s health in the future. We’ve pulled together answers to all your common questions about baby stem banking so you can understand the process easily. Find all the information you need whether you’re considering baby stem cell collection for your newborn or just want to know more about it.
Use this guide to learn all about baby stem cells, including information covering baby stem cell storage, stem cell preservation, what it involves, its advantages and the costs involved. Or if you’re ready to get started, call 0800 211 8389 or contact us online for a free consultation today.
What is baby stem cell storage?
Baby stem cell storage (or banking) is the collection of stem cells from umbilical cord blood and tissue. The stem cells are cryopreserved in specialist facilities for future use. This means they’re essentially frozen for an agreed amount of time and used when required for certain types of stem cell therapy, treatments, or clinical trials.
What are baby stem cells used for?
Saving baby stem cells means they might be used in the future to try and treat various conditions. They can be used for stem cell therapy that helps repair diseased, dysfunctional, or injured tissue. A common use of stem cells taken from babies is to treat blood diseases. Some conditions stem cells might be used to treat are:
- Bone marrow cancers
- Immune system disorders
- Sickle cell disease
Why store baby stem cells?
Storing newborn baby stem cells is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity as you can only collect stem cells from the umbilical cord and placenta just after birth. You can also gather stem cells from your child’s baby or milk teeth, but these are mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which differ from the types collected from cord blood and tissue.
Saving baby stem cells is important as they could help with the treatment of any illnesses, injuries, and diseases. It’s a great way to potentially protect your child’s future health. The umbilical cord can provide around ten times more stem cells than those collected from bone marrow, which is why newborn stem cell storage is vital.
Baby stem cell collection is a simple and non-invasive process that doesn’t harm your child or the mother. The umbilical cord and placenta are removed at birth anyway and otherwise discarded, so harvesting stem cells from it can be a good idea. They’ll be stored in professional facilities and cryopreserved to stay safe.
How to preserve baby stem cells
Newborn stem cell preservation is a painless process for both mother and baby. At Stem Protect we can arrange baby stem cell collection and banking from the umbilical cord and placenta after birth in the UK. A qualified phlebotomist will collect it before a medically qualified courier transports it to our laboratory for storage.
The general process to preserve baby stem cells is:
- Call 0800 211 8389 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation about baby stem cell preservation.
- Complete the storage agreement we’ll send out and make the initial payment.
- Receive your newborn stem cell collection kit and the contact details of your phlebotomist. We’ll notify your hospital about your choice to preserve your baby’s stem cells.
- Call your phlebotomist on the big day once labour starts and take your newborn stem cell collection kit to the hospital when it’s time.
- Your phlebotomist will make the collection after your baby has been born. They’ll take the maternal blood and put it in the newborn stem cell collection kit.
- Request courier collection and a medically approved courier will collect and transport your kit from the hospital or your home to our laboratory for safe storage and preservation.
How much does it cost to store baby stem cells?
Baby stem cell storage costs depend on the bundle you choose. How many children you have, whether you want cord and/or dental stem cell storage, and if you pay monthly or annually all affect the cost of child stem cell banking. Prices vary between different stem cell banks.
Are there important stem cells in baby cord blood and tissue?
Umbilical cord blood and cord tissue are rich in two distinct types of stem cells. These include hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Both of these stem cells in babies play important roles in regenerative medicine, and both work in their own individual way.
What is cord blood banking?
Cord blood banking involves the process of collecting blood left in your newborn’s placenta and umbilical cord and storing it for future medical use. The process is also referred to as umbilical cord blood banking. Cord blood contains potentially lifesaving stem cells.
Cord blood is collected straight after birth and the collection process is safe and painless for you and your baby, and it doesn’t interfere with your delivery or labour. Many parents often get caught up in bonding and holding their new baby that they’re unaware it’s even happened.
What is cord tissue banking?
Cord tissue banking involves obtaining around six inches of the umbilical cord at birth. This procedure is done after the placenta is delivered, the umbilical cord is cut, and the cord blood has been collected. The process is safe and painless.
The cord tissue also contains stem cells that may be of use for your child’s health in the future. With cord tissue banking these are cryogenically frozen and preserved at the same laboratory as any cord blood as well.
Why save cord blood for stem cell banking?
Cord blood is the blood that remains in the placenta and umbilical cord after the birth of your baby. It’s rich in blood stem cells, which are like those found in bone marrow. Stem cells are considered the ‘master cells’ of the body.
Blood-producing stem cells (hematopoietic stem cells – HSCs) are present in cord blood and can develop or morph into other types of cells. If someone is low in red or white blood cells or platelets then they can develop into these. Cord blood storage can be used to treat various diseases, including some types of cancer, genetic disorders, and immune deficiency.
Why save cord tissue for stem cell banking?
Cord tissue, also known as ‘Wharton’s jelly’, is the insulating tissue that surrounds the one vein and two arteries found within the umbilical cord. It contains white cells, fats, and many stem cells. These are mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which are said to change into a variety of connective tissues of the body.
Cord tissue has the potential to differentiate and regenerate into many different types of cells due to the large number of stem cells that can be collected from it. They could be used to treat even more conditions than cord blood.
This is because MSCs are increasingly being utilised in regenerative medicine for many conditions including kidney disease, autoimmune disease, and ALS. As the use of MSCs grows, we see many families beginning to preserve both the cord tissue and the cord blood. As a result of this, umbilical cord tissue banking is now commonplace.
What are the advantages of cord blood banking?
Cord blood is currently used in the treatment of more than 80 diseases. Stem cells are the building blocks of the blood and immune system. They can generate into other varieties of cells, so they can help repair blood vessels, organs, and tissues and can be used to treat a host of diseases.
For example, in cases where a patient has a condition such as leukaemia, the treatment offered is usually chemotherapy. However, if this fails, then doctors often do a stem cell transplant that involves a transfusion of stem cells from bone marrow or cord blood from a healthy donor. This can help create new blood, giving the individual an improved chance of making a full recovery.
Due to the stem cells in cord blood being immature, they haven’t learned how to attack foreign substances. It’s therefore much easier to match cord blood with transplant patients as they’re less likely to reject the transfusion. Each year, more than 2,000 cord blood stem cell transplants are performed worldwide.
What are the cord blood banking costs and cord tissue banking costs?
The costs of both cord blood banking and cord tissue banking depend on several factors. These include whether you want to pay annually or monthly, how many children you have and whether you want a combination of services or just one.
We’re proud to offer interest-free prices. Contact us today for a free consultation to find out what it could cost you for these life-changing opportunities.
Should I save baby teeth stem cells?
Saving and preserving baby teeth and even adult teeth stem cells gives you another chance if you’ve missed the opportunity to store the cells from the umbilical cord. You might be able to take advantage of dental pulp cell banking.
Our teeth hold quantities of unique dental pulp cells that can be processed and harvested for baby tooth storage. Cells that are found within your child’s milk teeth and those found in healthy adult teeth are very important. They can regenerate and can change into many other cell types.
This is possible because they’re considered ‘naive’ and therefore can change, helping to aid the repair of cells, muscles, nerves, bones and more. The process is non-invasive and very simple. Current therapies and treatments based on these stem cells include sickle cell, cleft palate repair and more.
Learn more about baby teeth stem cell banking