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Cord Blood Banking

Discussion in 'Pediatrics' started by Egyptian Doctor, Apr 5, 2011.

  1. Egyptian Doctor

    Egyptian Doctor Moderator Verified Doctor

    Mar 21, 2011
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    Umbilical cord blood banking is the practice of preserving for future use fetal blood that remains in the umbilical cord at the time of birth.

    During pregnancy, a developing fetus is attached to its mother's placenta by the umbilical cord. At birth, this cord is cut, and the placenta is expelled from the mother. Some fetal blood remains in the umbilical cord. Normally, this blood, along with the cord and the placenta, are simply disposed of. However, now there are ways to freeze the cord blood for future use.

    Umbilical cord blood is special because it contains a lot of cells called hematopoietic stem cells. A stem cell is an unspecialized master cell that can develop into several different kinds of specialized cells. Hematopoietic stem cells normally develop into red blood cells that carry oxygen, white blood cells that fight infection, and platelets that help make blood clot. These hematopoietic stem cells are not the same as embryonic stem cells that are at the center political and ethical debate about their use in research. Their collection does not harm either the mother or the baby.

    There are two other sources of hematopoietic stem cells

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