What is Cord Blood?

Cord blood, which contains powerful stem cells, comes from a newborn’s umbilical cord and is collected immediately after birth. Once the umbilical cord has been clamped and cut, the remaining blood in the umbilical cord is drawn into a collection bag.

What makes cord blood cells different?

Cord blood stem cells are biologically younger and are more flexible compared to adult stem cells from other sources like bone marrow. When saved, they have unique qualities and advantages:

  • Less risk of complications when used in transplants39
  • Ability to use one’s own stem cells for conditions that currently lack medical treatment options, also known as “autologous transplantation”
  • Immediately available and can minimize disease progression in early treatment40
  • Preserving them "stops the clock" and protects the cells from aging and being exposed to environmental factors and common viruses that can decrease their function41
Comparison of Stem Cell Sources Newborn Adult Embryonic
Ability to differentiate into various cell types
High proliferation capacity  
Low risk of tumor formation  
Low risk of viral contamination  
Capacity for autologous transplantation  
Established / proven treatment in human patients  

Stem cells can heal the body, promote recovery, and offer an enormous amount of therapeutic potential. Learn about families who have used their stem cells here.