A Brief History Of Cord Blood Banking
Cord blood banking has a history that spans about twenty-five years. To date, about 8,000 people have benefited from medical therapies using stem cells of the umbilical cord blood. Today cord blood is used in medical therapies similar to the way stem cells from bone marrow are used. With cord blood banking, it is possible to use cord blood stem cells to re-populate a blood and immune system.
Stem cell transplants started in 1983 when the first proposal was made to use umbilical cord blood as an alternative source of stem cells. The first successful cord blood transplant took place in 1988. This transplant was conducted in Paris on a six year old boy who was suffering from a blood disorder, Fanconi’s Anemia. Stem cells from umbilical cord blood made it possible to regenerate his blood and immune cells in his body and thus cure him.
The option of private cord blood banking became available to the public in 1992 when the first private cord blood bank was established. In 1993 the first cord blood transplant from a non-relative was conducted at Duke University. 1996 saw the development of the first US FDA Investigational New Drug for cord blood.
In 1997, as a result of cord blood banking technologies, it became possible to conduct a successful cord blood transplant on a 46 year old man suffering from chronic myelogenous leukemia.
The world’s first umbilical cord blood transplant was performed in 2000 with pre-implantation genetic testing for a perfect tissue match. A National Cord Blood Program was started in 2004. Illinois declared the right for women to opt for free cord blood banking in the year 2004
By 2005, the US Congress passed national cord blood legislation, UK researchers had discovered embryonic like stem cells in cord blood and more than 6,000 cord blood stem cell transplants were performed.