Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne conducts the world’s first clinical trial for cerebral palsy using umbilical cord stem cells. The trial recruited cerebral palsy affected children whose families have chosen to preserve their sibling’s umbilical cord blood with private banks.
Importance Of Cerebral Palsy Treatment
Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder that appears in early childhood. It affects the part of the brain that controls normal body movements, muscle coordination and balancing. The patients with cerebral palsy may experience seizures, impaired vision, walking and speech difficulty, urinary incontinence etc.
Cerebral palsy may occur during pregnancy, childbirth, infancy or early childhood due to various reasons: infection, fetal growth restriction, birth trauma, delivery complications, and exposure to radiation etc. This condition, if treated can improve the patients’ quality of life; even a little improvement can make a big difference in their life. Researchers believe that stem cell therapy can treat the patients and bring progress in their motor skills and every day activities.
First Clinical Trial Using Umbilical Cord Blood
Murdoch Children’s Research Institute is organizing the world’s first cerebral palsy trial using stem cell therapy at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. Children aged between 1 and 10 affected with cerebral palsy and have the cord blood of siblings stored in stem cell banks are recruited for this 2-year long trial. These children will receive cord blood transfusions that are rich in stem cells. The participants will be monitored for changes in their motor skills throughout the trial period.
According to professor Iona Novak of Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Institute, this study using cord blood is an important step in improving the treatment of cerebral palsy.
Benefit Of Cord Blood Preservation
For clinical trial participation, the patients are selected based on various criteria such as age, health condition, disease stage, previous treatment results etc. In this trial, the researchers used cord blood stem cells of siblings for the transfusion. Carly Stewart, the mother of 8-year old Lachlan said that she was glad she chose to preserve the second child’s umbilical cord blood in a private stem cell bank so now it can be used for him.
How To Preserve Cord Blood In India?
Umbilical cord blood contains the precious lifesaving stem cells that can be collected at the time of birth through a safe and simple process. The collected umbilical cord blood can be processed and the extracted stem cells can be preserved at cryogenic conditions for a lifetime of the baby.
It all begins with a simple click: I want to preserve my baby’s umbilical cord stem cells