Stats and facts

1. Cord blood stem cells are used to treat over 80 life-threatening diseases.

2. Cord blood stem cells help to treat leukaemia and lymphoma.

3. World Cord Blood Day takes place every year in November.

4. You can follow two hashtags for the latest updates throughout World Cord Blood Day; #WCBD21 or #WorldCordBloodDay.

5. 2021 is the 5th anniversary of World Cord Blood Day.

6. Cord blood is the blood left in the umbilical cord and placenta following the birth of a child.

7. Cord blood is a potent and non-controversial source of stem cells.

8. Unlike embryonic stem cells, cord blood is not controversial or unethical in any way because it is only collected post-birth.

9. Cord blood has no political or religious issues.

10. Collection of cord blood poses no risks to the mother or baby.

11. Cord blood stem cells are currently being used to treat and cure illnesses including many cancers, immune deficiencies and genetic disorders.

12. Cord blood can help to save lives.

13. Cord blood is easier to match than bone marrow.

14. Cord blood is easier to collect, store and access quickly for a transplant.

15. Research has shown that in stem cell transplants where only one cord blood unit is used, there is significantly less risk of GvHD (Graft versus Host Disease) for patients versus those undergoing a bone marrow transplant.

16. Studies have shown that there is less risk of a relapse for certain diseases if cord blood is used.

17. Cord blood can be shipped easily and made available in days.

18. The majority of cord blood units currently stored around the world was collected and stored before the 2020 pandemic, which means that these particular units are naturally Covid-free.

19. Cord blood is increasingly being used as the preferred source of stem cells instead of bone marrow.

20. Cord blood has many different advantages over bone marrow.

21. Cord blood stem cells are proving critical to new areas of regenerative medicine to potentially treat spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, autism, type 1 diabetes and more.

22. Cord blood is being used on a daily basis.

23. To date, there have been over 40,000 cord blood transplants worldwide.

24. In the majority of births, cord blood is thrown away as medical waste.

25. Dr Eliane Gluckman performed the world’s first cord blood transplant in Paris.

26. Sosa Evbuomwan was the world’s first paediatric patient to receive a cord blood transplant for sickle cell disease.

27. Aimee Robinson beat cancer thanks to a cord blood transplant.

28. Cord blood is rich in life-saving stem cells.

29. Cord blood is key in regenerative medicine research.

30. Cord blood is changing the face of medicine.

31. Umbilical cord blood stem cells are collected from the part of the cord that is no longer attached to the baby.

32. The average person has a 1 in 217 chance of having a stem cell transplant by the age of 76.

33. Collecting cord blood is painless for the baby and the mother.

34. Cord blood taken from a baby’s umbilical cord is always a perfect match for the baby.

35. The number of cord blood stem cell transplants performed each year has been rising as its effectiveness in treatments continues to be proven.

36. Thousands of people have been treated using stem cell transplantations.

37. Siblings have a 25 percent chance of being a perfect match to banked cord blood.

38. Parents have a 50 percent chance of being a partial match to banked cord blood.

39. Birth is the only opportunity to collect umbilical cord blood stem cells.

40. 4 million cord blood samples are held in storage across the world.

41. Cord blood stem cells have fewer matching criteria than bone marrow stem cells.

42. Stem cells are the ‘master cells’ of the body.

43. Blood-producing stem cells (called haematopoietic stem cells) are present in cord blood.

44. Haematopoietic stem cells are called ‘unspecialised’, which means that they can develop into those parts of the blood that the patient’s body requires.

45. A cord blood unit is processed by removing the red blood cells and plasma. This reduces the volume of the cord blood to 20ml, leaving the vital blood stem cells required for transplantation.

46. A cryopreservative is added to protect the blood stem cells while they are frozen.

47. Research has shown that cord blood can be stored for 25 years or more and still be used successfully in a stem cell transplant.

48. Parents have the choice between donating cord blood to a public cord bank or using a private bank to store it for their family.

49. Cord blood therapies are not limited to children, treatments of adults are common.

50. Cord blood banking is possible with natural births.

51. Cord blood banking is also possible with C-sections and delayed clamping.

52. Everyone has stem cells in their body.

53. At birth the density of stem cells is highest, declining with age afterwards.

54. Collecting cord blood at the time of birth must be done by a medically trained professional.

55. The blood remaining in the baby’s placenta and umbilical cord after birth is one of the richest sources of human haematopoietic stem cells.

56. When a patient is treated with their own cells, it is defined as an autologous transplant.

57. If a patient is treated by stem cells from a donor, the transplant is allogenic.

58. Private banking is the only way to guarantee that matching stem cells are available should the child or matched relative ever need a stem cell transplant.

59. The collection of cord blood does not interfere with the birthing process.

60. World Cord Blood Day first started in 2016.

61. Our Model Cell Biobank service offers a funded cord blood banking service to eligible expectant parents.

62. The Model Cell Biobank provides fully-funded and part-funded umbilical cord blood banking.

63. The Model Cell Biobank aims to provide families with the opportunity to bank their baby’s umbilical cord blood stem cells for the future, should the baby or another family member need them in the future.

64. Using our Model Cell Biobank, your baby’s cord blood stem cells will be stored for up to 25 years.

65. We’ve partnered with Biovault Technical to procure, process and store cord stem cells under its Human Tissue Authority Licence.

66. Our charity Ambassador, four-time winter Olympian Zoe Gillings-Brier, has banked both of her children’s umbilical cord blood stem cells.


67. “When I was pregnant with our first child, Léa I was reading a lot of pregnancy books and in one, I came across umbilical cord blood stem cell banking. The book didn’t go into too much detail, so I did research online which is where I learnt about all the fantastic benefits to banking your child’s cord blood stem cells” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

68. “Umbilical cord blood stem cell banking isn’t something I’d heard of before, so I was fascinated to learn that cord blood stem cells are currently being used to treat cancers and life-threatening diseases as well as being used to repair sporting injuries.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

69. “Throughout my career in snowboarding, I’ve had multiple injuries! As our children grow, we want to encourage them to be active, so it’s reassuring to know that should they ever need it, their stem cells could support them in making a full recovery from injuries and be used to protect them from illnesses, immune deficiencies and genetic disorders.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

70. “Umbilical cord blood stem cells can only be taken at the time of birth, so it’s a very now or never situation. I didn’t want to look back and regret not doing it, so I spoke to my husband Dan and he was on board, so we contacted the cord blood bank to get the ball rolling.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

71. “The phlebotomist and the whole process of extracting the umbilical cord blood stem cells were really straightforward – I didn’t notice anything; it all went smoothly. Léa’s cord blood stem cells were safely taken at no harm or risk to her and were packaged up. I sent them home with my mum and they were collected the next day to be securely stored for future use, should we need them.

“With so many health benefits we decided to also bank our son Jake’s cord blood stem cells too.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

72. “I’d definitely recommend storing umbilical cord blood stem cells to friends and family. They’re currently being used to treat over 80 life-threatening illnesses and can help with treating sporting injuries.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

73. “Knowing that we have our children’s cord blood stem cells securely banked, should they ever need them, is very reassuring.” – Zoe Gillings-Brier

74. “My dad came across the charity’s website and sent me a link, which is how I first learnt about cord blood banking. I started reading up about their Model Cell Biobank

service, which enables parents to store their baby’s umbilical cord blood stem cells for future use and found it really interesting.” – Sam Newborough

75. “The team at LMRUK were so helpful and knowledgeable – they talked me through the whole process and advised me that as a sibling, there was a 25% chance that Alice’s stem cells would be a match for Lara’s. Craig and I read through all the information on the LMRUK website and decided to apply.” – Sam Newborough

76. “Due to our daughter Lara’s health history, our application was approved and we were awarded the charity’s fully-funded offering which meant we could store Alice’s umbilical cord blood stem cells for up to 25 years. We were so grateful to the charity for their support and advice. They made the process straightforward from start to finish.” – Sam Newborough

77. “The umbilical cord blood stem cell collection process went really smoothly – it had no impact on the birth or bonding experience, and it happened out of sight so we could still have our privacy.” – Sam Newborough

78. “I am incredibly grateful to have found out about this potentially lifesaving service, and even if we don’t use the stored cord blood stem cells, it is reassuring to know that they will not go to waste and will be used for research purposes.” – Natalia

79. “The collection was very quick – we had our beautiful baby girl at 6pm, and within two hours her cord blood stem cells had been collected from the hospital and taken back to Plymouth to be stored. We were impressed and relieved that it had all be managed so efficiently, with no harm to our baby daughter.” – Clavy

80. “With so much research being conducted around the use of stem cells, we’re hoping that one day they will find a way of helping people who have had a stroke. We can then hopefully use some of my daughter’s stored cord blood stem cells to help my son, which is reassuring.” – Clavy