Cord blood is a rich source of blood forming stem cells and can be used in the treatment of more than 80 diseases and disorders such as leukemia, lymphoma, and aplastic anemia. The Cord Blood for Research Program facilitates research that could lead to new discoveries and improvements in patient care.
It is easier to match patients with cord blood. Before they have a transplant, patients have tissue typing tests to match the proteins in their blood — the HLA markers or histocompatibility antigens — to those of potential donors. With adult donors, a perfect or near perfect match to the patient is required for the best outcome.
Canadian Blood Services’ National Cord Blood Bank collects cord blood at hospitals in four Canadian cities (Ottawa, Brampton, Edmonton and Vancouver) and prepares it for frozen storage. Banked cord blood must meet strict quality standards to ensure that it is both safe and effective.