Research teams and companies have been developing exciting new cord blood products from the expansion of cord blood samples. Expansion is the process by which the desired cells are isolated from the cord blood sample and then cultured and treated with special agents. These agents stimulate the expansion of the cell population. The agents and cells will vary depending on the type of therapy they are being used for.
An average of 20 clinical trials per year since 2013 has resulted in several promising products moving into the regulatory approval process. Many of these products have been able to drastically decrease the time it takes for the cord blood cells to engraft, while increasing the chances that they successfully engraft. A cell has not properly engrafted until it has reached the bone marrow, begun to grow, and is creating healthy blood cells. The speed at which engraftment occurs is critical in reducing the time a patient needs to spend recovering in the hospital. Some of these products are exciting, because they are not restricted by Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) matching. This is especially important when considering that 70% of patient who need transplants will not have a suitable donor within their family.
Other products have a wide range of intended uses. These include treatment of auto-immune disorders, viral infection resistance, diabetes, degenerative neurologic conditions, Alzheimer’s disease, and many others.
For more in depth information on these companies and products, read this article.
Learn more about current treatments and the many clinical trials underway.