The term cord tissue is used to define the stem cells that can be found in the umbilical cord tissue, which is called Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs). They shouldn’t be confused with the cord tissues that are obtained from cord blood, which are known as Hematopoietic Stem Cells, or HSCs). The MSCs are very potent because they can be differentiated into several types of cells, which include myocytes (muscle cells), chondrocytes (cartilage cells), osteoblasts (bone cells) and adipocytes (fat cells).
Currently, the Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) are regarded as the best therapeutic cells when it comes to regenerative medicine related to inflammatory, vascular, muscular and osteoarticular diseases. More than 50 medical trials are being conducted to find how cord tissue can be used for treating diseases like autism, asthma, type 1 diabetes, hearing loss, cerebral palsy, eczema and plenty more. Therefore, cord tissue banking has become quite common. To take advantage of a baby’s cord tissue in the future, cord tissue is stored from all relevant areas of the cord.
This includes the Wharton’s jelly, the amniotic epithelium as well as the sub-amniotic and perivascular regions. When cells from different regions of the baby’s cord are stored, it is more likely that specific ones can provide numerous health benefits to your child in the future. One of the best things about cord tissue banking is that you know that your baby will be a 100% genetic match for their cord tissue stem cells. Parents are advised to save the stem cells of every baby to ensure they have a full genetic match.
Families with mixed ethnicities, in particular, should opt for cord tissue banking. This is due to the fact that it is more difficult for such families to find matches in the public bank. Storing their baby’s cord tissue ensures that they will have access to a 100% match.