Media news about the private blood bank from the umbilical cord

A circumstantial Jutarnji List article brings news about the private (family) blood bank from the umbilical cord.

Cost will be set, and early estimates are it will be 2.000 euro. It will be possible to keep the blood until the 18th birthday of a child. After that, deposit will be extra charged.

ZAGREB – In Rebro hospital in Zagreb, Croatian organic cells bank is founded. Some thirty doses have already been collected. Secretary of health, dr. Neven Ljubičić, has announced that a private blood bank from umbilical cord could come into existence in the middle of 2008.

Deposit will be charged, like in European countries. The early estimates are the cost will be 2.000 euro, and the blood will be kept until child’s 18th birthday. There will be a possibility to keep that blood longer on, but it will be extra charged in that case.

Blood from the umbilical cord literally saves lives. There are more and more banks in Europe and rest of the world where that kind of blood is deposited and kept, and used for medical treatments when needed. Volunteering is possible, which means those organic cells could be used for each patient – just like with the transfusion. But you can also store your own child’s blood and use it for one specific person only.

1.200 to 1.500 people in Croatia get ill with some malignant blood disease like leukaemia, lymphoma, and multiple myeloma. Although medical treatment with monoclonal antibodies, i. e. with intelligent drugs, has made surviving more possible in the last decade, additional improvement will be made with an aimed therapy.

Organizer of the large haematological meeting “Leukaemia and lymphoma – West and East together”, Boris Labar MD, says that this therapy is based on adjusted treatment for each patient, diagnosing gene changes, transplanting organic cells, mostly from person’s own umbilical cord kept in umbilical cord blood bank. The most eminent European and American experts in these complex diseases were present at the meeting.

Boris Labar also says there are more and more cures which can be applied and combined to cure these diseases, and allow surviving from myeloid leukaemia up to thirty years. Also, 80 percent of patients with acute leukaemia could be cured. Umbilical cord blood is a source of organic cells that can effectively cure malignant blood diseases, especially leukaemia and lymphoma. Umbilical cord blood is taken during child delivery.

The first to join are all delivery hospitals in Zagreb.
Blood from the umbilical cord is taken during delivery by trained nurses. The lowest quantity that can be used is 50 millilitres. Blood then freezes in liquid nitrogen, at -196 °C. After that it can be stored forever. First umbilical cord blood banks were founded not even ten years ago. All the delivery hospitals in Zagreb will take part in collecting blood from the umbilical cord till the end of this year. After that, delivery hospitals in Split, Rijeka and Osijek will join them.

New type of drugs
People with chronic myeloid leukaemia live for thirty years. With well known cure Glivec, there is a new remedy: Dasatinib and Nilotinib. For acute promyeloid cystic leukaemia new therapy is not so toxic as chemotherapy. New aimed treatment is possible with vitamin A derivate, or transretinoid acid and arsenic peroxide, Boris Labar says. New combination of drugs can cure up to 80 percent of patients. With multiple myeloma new therapy is Linelidomid, derived from notorious drug Talidomid, and Velcade. With Non Hodgin lymphoma, Mabthera is still the most efficient drug. Result of treatment with a particular drug Zevalin are still waited upon.

Source: Jutarnji List
Written by Goranka Jureško

Posted in News.