The American Heart Association has recently published results of a study that saw patients with heart failure receive an intravenous infusion of umbilical cord stem cells.
The study comprised of 30 patients aged 18 – 75 who had stable heart failure. Participants were given the stem cell therapy or a placebo. When analysing the results, researchers were able to compare the two a noted that those who received the stem cell infusion;
- Showed sustained and significant fourfold improvement to the hearts’ ability to pump blood
- Reported a greater quality of life
- Suffered no adverse effects as a result of the therapy
Damage caused by heart disease was once considered irreversible. The prospect that umbilical cord stem cells could provide treatment is very exciting. Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the developed world.
HEART DISEASE FACTS
- Heart failure affects 37 million people worldwide
- Half of people diagnosed with heart failure will die within 5 years
- Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the developed world
Why use umbilical cord stem cells?
Stem cells from cord blood are only available moments after birth, however, despite the urgency, most pregnant parents are not aware that the umbilical cord even contains stem cells, let alone that they can store them for treatments for their child in the future. Umbilical cord blood contains possibly the most powerful stem cells that a person will ever have developments like this new therapy for heart disease highlight why it is so important to raise awareness. The process of umbilical stem cell collection is completely safe and offers a readily available and non-controversial source of cells for regenerative medicine purposes – that would otherwise be discarded as clinical waste.
The treatment of heart disease is not the only area in which stem cells from the umbilical cord have been used to repair and regenerate damaged tissue. Cord blood is showing huge promise for the treatment of brain conditions like cerebral palsy and autism. In fact it is the only treatment so far, that appears to actually repair damage to the brain.
Source: Science Daily
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