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Thread: why don't DR's today use..

  1. #1

    why don't DR's today use..

    umbilical stem cells from new born babies to help treat other illnesses right now. I had a friend ask me this question because many many babes are born daily and the cords are discarded. I think that I read recently that 2 diabetes was helped with the use of stem cells and it would make sense that the new parents of children where the parent knows that they have diabetes would save the cord and blood for treatment for themselves. Why are these not saved?

  2. #2
    Sebastiang,

    There is unfortunately too much hype right now concerning umbilical cord blood cell therapies and many unscrupulous people who are taking advantage of people. Let me talk about each of these in sequence.

    • Hype. Umbilical cord blood does contain stem cells but relatively few compared to bone marrow. The only established and proven use of cord blood cells right now is for bone marrow replacement, particularly in children. A very influential study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that cord blood is as good as bone marrow and has less complications when used to treat hematopoietic diseases (where the right blood cells are not being made), chemotherapy-treated leukemia and immune-deficiency syndromes where there is a shortage of functional white blood cells, and genetic disorders such as sickle cell anemia and thalassemia. Some recent clinical trials suggest that umbilical cord blood cells may be useful for treating kids with Krebbe's disease and muscular dystrophy. These are very exciting and need to be confirmed. In all these treatments, HLA-antigen matched cord blood cells are very important. The better the match, the more likely the engraftment. However, even in 4/6 HLA matches, some 80% of umbilical cord blood seem to engraft, for reasons that are not well understood. Bone marrow engraftment requires 6/6 matches. There is as yet no convincing data that umbilcal cord blood cells are beneficial for spinal cord injury or diabetes. That is why clinical trials are necessary.

    • Scams. There are a lot of scams going on. For example, there is a group in the Bahamas that is offering to give umbilcal cord blood cells to children with cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury, and other neurological conditions, saying that these are stem cells that can bring back function. There is a group in Shenzhen and Shenyang (Beike) in China that is charging people to give them expanded CD34+ cells of unmatched umbilical cord blood cells for spinal cord injury and numerous other neurological conditions. I don't think that there is any evidence that these therapies are useful for even 10% of the conditions they are treating. Unfortunately, none of these places are taking the trouble to doucment the safety or efficacy of the treatment that they are giving. For that reason, I think that these places are scams, selling unproven therapies.

    One of the reasons why cord blood cell transplants are not now being used more is because one must use chemotherapy to eliminate the bone marrow cells that the cord blood cells are supposed to replace. This process is dangerous and failure of engraftment can be deadly to the patients. Fortunately, the procedure is now becoming safer and more gentle. I believe that this will be even safer in the future. There is no evidence that infusion of umbilical cord blood into people, even HLA-matched units, without chemoablation of the stem cells, has any beneficial effects. There is no evidence that infusion of umbilical cord blood into the veins will result in any of the cells entering the spinal cord. Finally, there is no evidence that intrathecal administration of the cells will result in cells that enter into the spinal cord, survive, and behave like stem cells (i.e. produce other kinds of cells, such as neurons or astrocytes).

    Note that we are planning to transplant umbilical cord blood cells into the spinal cords of people with chronic spinal cord injury. I don't know whether the treatment will be beneficial. However, we chose to use HLA-matched cells and we are transplanting directly into the the spinal cord. Our clinical trial should be a definitive test of cord blood mononuclear cell therapy of chronic spinal cord injury.

    People are now rushing to donate umbilical cord blood of their babies. They should be careful who they choose to store their baby's blood. Most so-called private cord blood banking companies have little or no experience with transplantation. There are few standards being imposed and it is not clear that the blood is being stored appropriately or will be any good. If possible, people should choose companies that have a track record of successful transplants with their blood. Incidentally, China just passed a law that says that only cord blood banks that have over 5000 units and 5 successful transplants would be accredited.

    The United States Congress passed a law last year that appropriates about $90 million to double the amount of cord blood available for transplantation in th United States. At the present, there are about 120,000 units of cord blood available for transplantation and about 6000 units of cord blood are being transplanted every year. The number of transplants is going up exponentially and I am afraid that even 200,000 units may not be sufficient to meet demand.

    Wise.
    Last edited by Wise Young; 05-01-2007 at 09:09 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member CapnGimp's Avatar
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    Type 2 diabetes can be CURED with a lifestyle change. Meaning PROPER diet and exercise. Happens all the time.

  4. #4
    Cap:

    I know that. I was not meaning that I had that problem. Maybe that is something that you have and you have it under control with your PROPER diet and exercise. I thought that everybody knew that the right diet and regular exercise would help in that area. But, I was not just talking about that. It was a general question that Wise answered. Thanks Wise

  5. #5
    Senior Member CapnGimp's Avatar
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    Nah, I was just wanting folks to know that type2 diabetes is a LIFESTYLE problem in most of those who have it. Cord blood isn't required to cure it. Education is.
    UNFORTUNATELY, most who have it are happy to continue with it, without having the desire to change and cure it.
    I may sound harsh here but why should money in the billions be thrown away yearly on this problem when it could go to researching/treating something that is NOT a lifestyle problem.
    I knew the post was not in reference to yourself.
    I have family with type 1 and I have friends with type 2. I have lost a few close friends who died a slow wasteful death with type 2. I have talked with many many people with type 2. It is amazing that a) they did NOT know it was curable and b) didn't see the need to change, they could survive with the standard 'treatment' however, it cost's billions to treat this, money down a tube that could better be applied elsewhere.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Young
    Sebastiang,

    There is unfortunately too much hype right now concerning umbilical cord blood cell therapies and many unscrupulous people who are taking advantage of people. Let me talk about each of these in sequence.

    • Hype. Umbilical cord blood does contain stem cells but relatively few compared to bone marrow. The only established and proven use of cord blood cells right now is for bone marrow replacement, particularly in children. A very influential study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that cord blood is as good as bone marrow and has less complications when used to treat hematopoietic diseases (where the right blood cells are not being made), chemotherapy-treated leukemia and immune-deficiency syndromes where there is a shortage of functional white blood cells, and genetic disorders such as sickle cell anemia and thalassemia. Some recent clinical trials suggest that umbilical cord blood cells may be useful for treating kids with Krebbe's disease and muscular dystrophy. These are very exciting and need to be confirmed. In all these treatments, HLA-antigen matched cord blood cells are very important. The better the match, the more likely the engraftment. However, even in 4/6 HLA matches, some 80% of umbilical cord blood seem to engraft, for reasons that are not well understood. Bone marrow engraftment requires 6/6 matches. There is as yet no convincing data that umbilcal cord blood cells are beneficial for spinal cord injury or diabetes. That is why clinical trials are necessary.

    • Scams. There are a lot of scams going on. For example, there is a group in the Bahamas that is offering to give umbilcal cord blood cells to children with cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury, and other neurological conditions, saying that these are stem cells that can bring back function. There is a group in Shenzhen and Shenyang (Beike) in China that is charging people to give them expanded CD34+ cells of unmatched umbilical cord blood cells for spinal cord injury and numerous other neurological conditions. I don't think that there is any evidence that these therapies are useful for even 10% of the conditions they are treating. Unfortunately, none of these places are taking the trouble to doucment the safety or efficacy of the treatment that they are giving. For that reason, I think that these places are scams, selling unproven therapies.

    One of the reasons why cord blood cell transplants are not now being used more is because one must use chemotherapy to eliminate the bone marrow cells that the cord blood cells are supposed to replace. This process is dangerous and failure of engraftment can be deadly to the patients. Fortunately, the procedure is now becoming safer and more gentle. I believe that this will be even safer in the future. There is no evidence that infusion of umbilical cord blood into people, even HLA-matched units, without chemoablation of the stem cells, has any beneficial effects. There is no evidence that infusion of umbilical cord blood into the veins will result in any of the cells entering the spinal cord. Finally, there is no evidence that intrathecal administration of the cells will result in cells that enter into the spinal cord, survive, and behave like stem cells (i.e. produce other kinds of cells, such as neurons or astrocytes).

    Note that we are planning to transplant umbilical cord blood cells into the spinal cords of people with chronic spinal cord injury. I don't know whether the treatment will be beneficial. However, we chose to use HLA-matched cells and we are transplanting directly into the the spinal cord. Our clinical trial should be a definitive test of cord blood mononuclear cell therapy of chronic spinal cord injury.

    People are now rushing to donate umbilical cord blood of their babies. They should be careful who they choose to store their baby's blood. Most so-called private cord blood banking companies have little or no experience with transplantation. There are few standards being imposed and it is not clear that the blood is being stored appropriately or will be any good. If possible, people should choose companies that have a track record of successful transplants with their blood. Incidentally, China just passed a law that says that only cord blood banks that have over 5000 units and 5 successful transplants would be accredited.

    The United States Congress passed a law last year that appropriates about $90 million to double the amount of cord blood available for transplantation in th United States. At the present, there are about 120,000 units of cord blood available for transplantation and about 6000 units of cord blood are being transplanted every year. The number of transplants is going up exponentially and I am afraid that even 200,000 units may not be sufficient to meet demand.

    Wise.

    ...you stated "we are" going to use umbilical cells on chronic sci.....when is this trial and how can I become a candidate?

    xiexie Dr. Young,
    lei







  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Z~LEI
    ...you stated "we are" going to use umbilical cells on chronic sci.....when is this trial and how can I become a candidate?

    xiexie Dr. Young,
    lei
    Please look up my posts on chinascinet in this forum. Wise.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Scott Buxton's Avatar
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    Hmmm. Uncertainty. Rats!

    "Note that we are planning to transplant umbilical cord blood cells into the spinal cords of people with chronic spinal cord injury. I don't know whether the treatment will be beneficial. However, we chose to use HLA-matched cells and we are transplanting directly into the the spinal cord. Our clinical trial should be a definitive test of cord blood mononuclear cell therapy of chronic spinal cord injury. "

    Yikes. I didn't realize there was this much uncertainty. Rats.

    Scientific skepticism is good though. My fingers are crossed for your clinical trial! Scott.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Scott Buxton's Avatar
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    "Note that we are planning to transplant umbilical cord blood cells into the spinal cords of people with chronic spinal cord injury. I don't know whether the treatment will be beneficial. However, we chose to use HLA-matched cells and we are transplanting directly into the the spinal cord. Our clinical trial should be a definitive test of cord blood mononuclear cell therapy of chronic spinal cord injury." "Umbilical cord blood does contain stem cells but relatively few compared to bone marrow."

    So what might be the reason for using umbilical cord blood cells? Lithium will cause them to proliferate, but why not just start even ahead of that with bone marrow?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Sebastiang
    umbilical stem cells from new born babies to help treat other illnesses right now. I had a friend ask me this question because many many babes are born daily and the cords are discarded. I think that I read recently that 2 diabetes was helped with the use of stem cells and it would make sense that the new parents of children where the parent knows that they have diabetes would save the cord and blood for treatment for themselves. Why are these not saved?
    This is a very good letter. He got Umbilical Cord Stem Cells from the Beike company in Shenzhen
    David’s Letter to the World
    Stem Cells For Life
    To whom It may concern,
    My name is David Aldrich. I am a 49-year-old quadriplegic. My injury level is a C3, C4, incomplete. On May 27, 2002, I slipped and fell off of a boat anchored in shallow water and struck my head causing my injury. No one saw me fall, which resulted in me drowning. Friends of mine on the beach eventually spotted me floating face down in the water and pulled me to shore. I was not breathing. Fortunately there were two paramedics anchored on the same beach on their boat and they heard the cries for help. They immediately administered CPR and brought me back to life. I was airlifted to St. Mary’s Hospital in West Palm Beach, where I clung to life in a coma. My family flew to be by my side. I was not expected to live, the prognosis was grim. The doctors told my family that I had injured my spinal cord and was paralyzed from the nipples down. I came out of the coma after three days and was on a ventilator and a feeding tube with a halo brace on my head. I had no feeling or movement in my entire body. I was almost totally blind and had lost most of my hearing. I thought I was in a very dark room and remember wanting someone to turn the lights on. Since I was on a ventilator, I was unable to speak and could only blink my eyes and make pops and clicks with my mouth to communicate. I didn’t realize the extent of my injuries for several months. At one point, I had made the choice to end my life and my brother Paul, who was my guardian, went through the steps to remove my life support. Just hours before pulling the plug I changed my mind and decided that I wanted to live. I spent a total of 359 days in three hospitals between Florida and Colorado. My mom and dad came to be with me every single day while I was in Florida and the whole family took turns visiting me while I was in Colorado. We have a very close family and they all put their own lives on hold to make sure that someone was with me most of the time. For this I will be eternally grateful. I endured and survived several pitfalls such as an 8” stage 4 decubitus, becoming septic, pneumonia and congestive heart failure just to name a few. Upon my arrival at Craig Hospital in Colorado, I was a mere 120 pounds of skin and bones in contrast to my 230 pounds of muscle prior to my accident. My coccyx had deteriorated and had to be cut out with a circular saw. My decubitus was then surgically repaired after which I had to remain flat on my back for five weeks. After several attempts, I finally weaned off the ventilator after nine months. Just before leaving I was able to begin eating by mouth and my feeding tube was removed.
    I flew home to Delray Beach, Florida on May 21, 2003 with Tricia, my caregiver at that time. Waiting for me at home was my sister, Karen and my new LPN, Norma who still works with me to this day. There were already ramps installed at my house that were built by my brother Bruce and there was a hospital bed waiting for me with an electric overhead lift along with a host of medical equipment such as a suction machine pulsox, oxygen, nebulizer ,and a BI-Pap. I would now require in - home nursing care 24/7 as I could no longer do anything for myself. Shortly after arriving home, my heart started slowing down, my blood pressure dropped and I had episodes of passing out. I was rushed to the hospital where my heart stopped beating for a short time. I needed a pacemaker but refused to go back on the ventilator for the surgery for fear that I might either die or be stuck on the vent again. I agreed to have one surgically implanted under local anesthesia. In 2004, I had my trach removed and eventually had flap surgery to seal the hole in my neck. Now I had to learn to speak all over again. My voice was weak and my speech was very slow and slurred. I also began therapy to strengthen my upper body but soon reached a plateau and was discharged from rehab. I joined world gym in 2005 and began a more aggressive weight training program. My vision had improved although things were still very blurry and I was not able to read or watch TV. All that I could make out were shapes and my vision was primarily black and white. My hearing had improved greatly although I had a difficult time blocking out background noise. I had some movement in both arms and my left leg. I only had a twitch in my right leg and no movement whatsoever in both hands. I could bend at the waist and had some strength but very little stability in my trunk. I had violent uncontrollable spasms in both legs and both arms that were extremely painful. I also had a great deal of pain in my neck, my lower back, and chronic pain in my left foot. In May of 2006, I had severe abdominal pain and again was rushed to the hospital. They wanted to do exploratory surgery but once again I would have to be put back on the ventilator. I refused to do this and checked myself out of the hospital and went home. In a short amount of time the pain became excruciating. My brother Paul and his wife Sally called and pleaded with me to go back to the hospital and have the surgery. They revealed that they were secretly planning a trip for me to go to China to have stem cell treatments. They had originally planned to fly to Florida and surprised me with the great news but this emergency forced them to tell me over the phone. I was brought back into the hospital where I agreed to lift my DNR{ Do Not Resuscitate }and be put back onto a ventilator. They didn’t operate until the next morning. When the doctor opened me up, he found that my appendix had burst and I was lucky to be alive. After surgery I had difficulty coming off the ventilator. My breathing was very shallow and I was on oxygen most of the time. I remained on the critical list for 16 days before being moved to a step down unit and eventually going home. Paul and Sally had planned to leave for China in June. I had become very weak from my hospital stay and I knew it would take me some time to become strong enough to endure the trip. I had to wait about three weeks for my incision to heal before going back to the gym. I worked very hard to get back in shape. Finally, on August 28th, Sally, my nurse Norma and I departed for China for what we all hoped would be a turning point in my life. Now comes the good stuff!
    We arrived at Shenzhen Hospital, home of “Stem Cells China”, early Thursday morning, and settled into our new room on the 14th floor for the next five weeks. I was told that I was only the 14th American to be treated there. Over the next two days I was videotaped, interviewed and medically assessed. I went through a battery of tests, x-rays and blood work before my first scheduled stem cell injection. Every doctor that evaluated me told me the same two things; first, in their medical opinion, with a lot of work that I would be able to walk again some day and second, in order to do so I needed to lose some weight so that my joints would be able to support my body. All of my test results came back fine and the doctors gave me the green light to move forward with my first stem cell injection. There are three ways to introduce the stem cells to your body; first by surgically implanting them into the spine at the injury site, second is by lumbar puncture and third by use of an IV. Since I had just had so much trouble coming off the ventilator after my appendicitis and due to the fact that my level of injury was so high, and also to avoid the risk of jeopardizing the movement that I had already regained, they decided to rule out implanting the cells surgically. I received a total of six stem cell treatments: four by lumbar puncture and two by IV. Each stem cell injection contains a minimum of 10 million stem cells. I also began what would become my daily regimen of massage, traditional Chinese acupuncture and physical and occupational therapy. My first treatment was by lumbar puncture, after which you must remain flat on your back for five hours without moving or eating. I have problems breathing while I am on my back and my oxygen saturation drops very low so I had to wear my Bi-Pap to assist my breathing. I expected the injection and recuperation to be more painful than it actually was. The only real side effect that I experienced was a stiff, sore lower back. What amazes me the most was the level of skill and accuracy that the Chinese have with needles. Since my injury my veins had become very difficult to draw blood from or to administer an IV. It normally takes several attempts by American doctors and nurses to find and stick a vein. The Chinese nurses get the vein on the first attempt every time with no pain felt by me. The same holds true for the acupuncture. Every day I had 23 needles inserted in my legs, my arms and one in my head usually in the same location and felt very little pain.
    In a short period of time I realized that my vision had improved, and my breathing was easier and my voice had become stronger. I was now able to sit up from a reclined position. I began feeling stronger and healthier which I feel was due to a combination of the acupuncture and all of the aggressive therapy that I was receiving. As time went on the stem cell treatments became easier. By the third treatment I was able to lie on my back for the five hours without the use of the Bi-Pap. My brother Paul arrived on the third week and both he and Sally and Norma were great motivators for my progress. The most exciting change came that week. Sally was sending out progress reports from China and people were e-mailing back there hopes and prayers and encouragements. One of the e-mails came in larger than normal print. Paul held the paper up in front of my face and for the first time in 4 years I was actually able to read a letter! We all broke down in tears of joy in light of this amazing miracle. This milestone had to be a result of the stem cells as no amount of therapy would be able to improve my eyesight. I began reading everything in sight. Television became clearer and I was able to drive my own wheelchair with greater ability. Most of the changes that I was noticing were very subtle. You can’t inject stem cells one day and expect to get up and walk the next. It takes time. I knew that most of the major changes would hopefully occur in the coming months. According to the doctors the stem cells continue to mature for a year and a half and I would know by then how much of an impact they made and if I would return to China for a second round of treatments. Sally flew home after the third week and Paul remained in China for the remainder of the five weeks and then accompanied Norma and me back to Florida.
    When I arrived home my vision and speech had improved so dramatically that I purchased a new computer and a new cell phone both with speech recognition software. For the first time in four years I was now able to place my own phone calls and compose and read my own e-mails! My primary care doctor prescribed aqua as well as conventional physical therapy. My goal was to be able to stand within six months and hopefully take a step within one year. My upper body had become fairly strong, my trunk was becoming more stable but my legs were fairly weak. I had begun using a standing table in China which was fairly painful in my hips, my ankles, and feet but I could tell by the time I had left that they were improving. I purchased an electric standing tilt table for my home so I could continue to strengthen my lower body. My legs were getting stronger and finally my right leg was beginning to respond and I was able to control the movements of both of my legs and my feet. I hired a new night nurse to exercise and massage my legs, my back and my arms. I wanted to continue the type of therapy that I had received in China and increase the intensity of my workouts. The pool therapy opened up a whole new world of opportunity for me to be able to stand on my own. Within weeks I was able to stand in about 4 1/2 feet of water with minimum assistance. My legs were getting stronger especially my right leg and by Thanksgiving came another milestone: I actually took my first steps in the pool! My land therapy consisted of sitting up unsupported on my own and sitting up from a recline position. In a short period of time I was able to do both of these effortlessly and we began working on strengthening my trunk by pushing against resistance from different directions which also was sharpening my central nervous system. I do pool therapy twice a week, land therapy once a week and am still going to the gym to work my upper body at least twice a week. I was gaining an amazing amount of strength and control and by the beginning of December some miraculous things began to happen. I am now able to walk across the pool in 4 1/2 feet of water with the therapist balancing me by only my elbow and wrist. I am also able to stand up in 3 1/2 feet of water for several minutes. I began to have some feeling and movement in both wrists and all my fingers. I am now able to completely close my fingers resembling a handshake on my left hand and close them about halfway on my right hand! I can also straighten and bend my wrists back and forth. This has enabled me to drive my own chair with greater accuracy and control. I can now navigate through stores, inside my home, and through narrow doorways. My spasms and pain have decreased significantly and my lungs have continued to get stronger. Before going to China, I used to always be cold even if the temperature was 80° in the house. After the treatments I now feel much warmer and I can actually sense hot and cold on my hands. The most dramatic thing happened one night while lying in bed doing my exercises. I was able to draw my feet towards my buttocks and then raise them straight up into the air. I can separate them and bring them back together, and move them back and forth, lower them down and raise them up again! It has only been 4 months since I arrived home from China. I have lost about 20 pounds and am working on losing another 10. I would like to dedicate this letter to my three nurses: Norma, Donna and Tina for their hard work, dedication and great care. Without them I could never have achieved the level of success that I have detailed in this letter.
    I feel that my results so far are absolute proof of the power of Stem Cell therapy! I would love to shout its praises from the highest mountain but for now all I have is this letter and my video. This testament is a true display of God’s love and man’s wisdom witnessed in a way that few people will ever know. I desperately want to go back to China for more treatments later this year. My funds are limited but my spirit and my determination have no boundaries! My family, friends and doctors are all in awe of my progress and improvements. The hope that stem cells provide needs to be spread across our nation. No one should have to leave the United States of America and travel half way around the world to China to be able to take advantage of stem cell treatments! Expanding the use of stem cells in this country will give a renewed hope to people with spinal cord injuries, other disabilities and chronic diseases. There is no longer a need to suffer in pain and depend on medication. There is a light at the end of the tunnel for people like me and thanks to Stem Cells China, it is shining brightly!
    Sincerely,
    David W. Aldrich
    C4 -C5-C6 Incomplete Walking Quad. (Brown Sequard)
    http://www.myspace.com/turbobuick87
    www.lancestemcellchinatrip.blogspot.com

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