Birth is a one-time
opportunity. Make a choice on the day your baby is born which will impact
the future health of the child and even your other children. Banking life
saving umbilical cord blood of your child will offer a potential resource
for treating a growing number of ailments, including cancer,
, blood, and immune disorders.
1988, stem cells have been effective in treating more than 80
life-threatening diseases including
different types of Cancers
and Metabolic disorders,
This most talked about life saving umbilical cord
blood bank arrives in Andhra Pradesh.
Now parents can bank their baby's cord
blood with Cord Care (A Division of PathCare
Labs (P) Ltd.,) - Andhra Pradesh's first
Cord Blood Stem Cell Banking disclosed Dr. G.V.
Prasad, Managing Director and CEO of PathCare
Labs (P) Ltd. addressing a Press Conference in
city today. It is South India's second and
India's fifth facility.
Cord Care is a division of PathCare Labs,
a Hyderabad based Futuristic
Diagnostic Service Provider with a
state-of-the-art Central Clinical Reference
Laboratory at Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh offering
full range of speciality diagnostic facilities
resulting in a higher degree of clinical
excellence and accuracy in reporting.
PathCare has embraced a policy of stringent
quality standards, ethical practices,
professionalism, innovation, optimism and
dedication for carrying it into the realms of
global leadership in providing accurate clinical
referral testing services.
Blood Stem Cell Storage facility is
designed to meet global norms for processing and
cyro-preservation of samples efficiently, aided by
the most advanced technology and computerization.
The only stem cell bank with national coverage
supported by Regional Laboratories and more than
600 Collection Centers spread across the country.
Cord Blood Stem Cell Bank has been set up
at PathCare Labs, Hyderabad with the state
of the art facilities such as
• Fully Automated Stem Cell Processing Section •
Testing Laboratory • Cryo-Preservation
Centre • IT and Logistics
support centre • Power Back-up etc.
Cord Blood Stem Cell Bank is established
would be affiliated and certified by a key
Governing Agencies such as DBT (Department of
Bio-technology), DCGI (Drug Controller, Government
of India), US-FDA and American Association of
Blood Banks (AABB). The quality and operational
procedures of bank would confirm to the guidelines
recommended by these agencies.
CORD BLOOD STEM CELLS:
Cord blood is the blood that remains in the
newborn's umbilical cord after the cord has been
cut and discarded. The blood is not drawn from the
baby, but rather drained from the umbilical cord
after the baby is born. The blood along with the
placenta is otherwise discarded.
Doctors have identified that cord blood,
like bone marrow, is a rich source of stem cells,
which can be used in medical treatments. Cord
blood contains stem cells that can save lives.
A variety of cell types exist in cord blood
including Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSC),
Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) and Epithelial Stem
Cells (ESC). Cord blood is routinely discarded
after birth, but a process known as
cord blood banking allows families to save
this valuable resource for potential future
Stem Cells have opened a whole new area of thought
in the history of medical treatment. Stem cells
are the body's "master" cells that regenerate and
turn into the cells that form all of the tissues,
organs, and systems in the human body. The first
use of stem cells in medicine was to regenerate
healthy blood and immune cells in cancer patients
after they received chemotherapy. In an exciting
new area of medicine called
medicine, scientists are focusing on
using cord blood stem cells for the treatment of
brain injury and
Stem cells can be roughly described as the
all-rounders of our body. They can be called over
to bat, bowl and field on behalf of other cells in
case of emergencies.
They can regenerate into over 200
types of tissues. Every stem cell divides
in to a potential muscle cell or
blood cell or nerve cell.
What is more exciting is the discovery that
cord blood is a rich source of stem cells.
Research into stem cells is very promising
and indicates that numerous other diseases like
Alzheimer’s disease, Cartilage Regeneration, Liver
Multiple Sclerosis, Muscular Dystrophy,
Spinal Cord Injuries etc can be treated
stem cell therapy.
Trials are on to treat lifestyle diseases
such as diabetes, liver disorders and heart
Patients requiring a
stem cell transplant will receive these
stem cells from one of three sources: embryonic,
bone marrow, circulating blood, or umbilical cord
blood. The first two exist in all healthy adults,
but cord blood can only be harvested and stored at
birth. It is easier to match transplant patients
with cord blood than with the two sources of adult
blood. Hence, establishing bank to preserve cord
blood can save many lives.
Cord blood stem cell transplants have
better success rates than
bone marrow transplants and are preferred
because these cells are young.
It has also been scientifically found that cord
blood stem cells have better tolerance of HLA
mismatches. Thus cord blood can make a difference
between life and death in difficult transplants.
Stem Cell are so tiny that it would take a million
of them clustered together to form a pin head.
Yet as their name denotes all other cells
'stem' from them. They have the capacity to
reconstruct, repair and make good damaged cell
structures/ailing organs such as brain, the heart,
the spine, the limbs, the muscles, the skin and
everything else that constitutes the human body.
Once the body is fully grown they lie dormant in
the marrow of our bones, in the cavities in our
eye, under the nose, in our stomach and even in
our skin waiting for the signal for transform into
whichever tissue or organ that is needed. They are
the body's hidden biological repair system--the
super mechanics with a warehouse stacked with
everything you need to make your body new again.
Cord Blood is a Bio-Genetic Insurance against
diseases - since these stem cells may be
lifesaving to their family. Recognizing the
current and future potential many families are
seriously considering storing
newborn's cord blood so that they can fall back
upon this biological resource should the need
arise. Most of the families, who have no family
history of disease, but recognize the current and
future potential of their newborn's
cord blood stem cells as a biological
resource if ever needed. Families know that there
is only one opportunity - at birth - to collect
these genetically unique stem cells and if not
taken, the cord blood is simply discarded.
These banks are large scale cryogenic facilities
that preserves cord blood at around -196ºC.
It takes just 5 to 10 minutes to collect
Cord Blood since the cord blood is collected after
the baby is born and the umbilical cord has been
clamped and cut. It is a very simple and painless
process for both mother and child.
Cord Care has a facility to store upto one lakh
samples said Dr. G.V. Prasad. The collection,
processing and preservation of cord blood is done
at a fee of Rs. 75,000 and the samples are stored
in cryogenic vaults for a period of 21 years.
This is certainly a lifetime investment
which can make a difference between life and
Since the first successful
stem cell transplantation took place in
1988, when French researchers took umbilical cord
blood from a newborn and gave it to a 5 year old
sibling who had Fanconi's anemia, a severe type of
anemia that causes skeletal defects. To date,
there have been more than 10,000
umbilical cord blood stem cell transplants
According to latest edition of India Today, The
L.V. Prasad Institute has treated over 700
cases of Corneal regenerative procedures using
stem cells with much success said Dr. G.V. Prasad.
Stem cell banks are well developed business
concept in developed nations and it is rapidly
gaining ground in India. Stem cells were in the
limelight when recently US President Barak Obama
lifted an eight-year-old ban on
Government-supported funding for
embryonic stem cell research, opening
floodgates for millions of dollars in research.
In the Indian too, stem cell banking is gaining
momentum. "In India the industry put-together has
banked about 25,000
cord blood units over the last three years.
This number is set to increase substantially with
increased market reach and awareness, increase in
regulatory approvals for stem cells based products
and lowered resistance to private banking will
together encourage more clients to choose stem
cell banking, Dr. G.V. Prasad said.
Stating further Dr.G.V.Prasad added that with more
than 80,000 births a day or 26 million births a
year, India is poised to be the largest source for
umbilical cord blood in the world. It's no
surprise then that leading stem cell banking
companies are keenly eyeing India. The investments
are considerable and mostly run into millions of
dollars. Due to high birth rates, India presents
lucrative opportunity for stem cell banking
Stem cell preservation is a huge business
opportunity in the international market and as per
estimates the global stem cell market is expected
to become USD 10 billion opportunity over next 10
years. Analysts estimate that Indian stem cell
banks, which are currently at Rs. 100 crore, would
generate Rs. 2,700 crore in revenues by 2012,
accounting for 17 per cent of the world market.
"Companies with foreign funding are entering the
market and are planning to capture at least 21 per
cent of the total market,".
The world market for stem cell therapy is
projected to increase from an estimated Rs
1,44,000 crore ($ 30 billion) in 2009 to Rs.
4,60,800 crore ($96 billion)
Further, India offers unmatched advantages in
terms of land and manpower cost competitiveness,
availability of technical workforce with high
skill sets and regulated market. The Country has
all the essential ingredients to emerge as a key
repository of cord blood for companies across the
With rapid economic growth, widening base of high
income group couples, the Country has huge target
population that could be enticed towards the
cord blood storage. Estimated cost of cord
blood storage cost around USD 1,500 to USD 2200
for a 20 year period and India has huge customer
base which could afford this said Dr. G.V.
Presently, lack of awareness and highly technical
nature of the process is the key reason for a
small customer base in the Country. However, the
market has tremendous potential that could be
tapped by initiating an awareness campaign and a
customized marketing plan observed Dr. Prasad.
As of now, there are four players in this
five-year-old market. Most of these
cord blood banking companies are having an
overseas parent company which is responsible for
the initial investment. Leading private players in
area of cord blood banking are: Life-cell
International, Chennai; Cryo banks International
India, Gurgaon; Reliance Life Sciences, Mumbai and
Cord-life Sciences India, Kolkata.
The pharmaceutical clusters at Hyderabad would
offer various operational and infrastructure
benefits to the Cord Care Stem Cell bank.
Since the city is housed with several pharma,
biotech, CRO’s and R&D companies as its
prospective tenants, it would offer significant
options for operational and technical
collaboration. Further, the envisaged Clinical
Trials would facilitate testing of pioneering stem
cell therapies. Joint research collaboration
between biotech firm and stem cell bank would
expedite the process wherein the bank would extend
its hi-end storage facilities to be used for
trials in the vicinity. Thus the cluster would
assist the bank realize various growth avenues
arising out of such a configuration said Dr.
Established in January 2008 within a span of 18
months PathCare Labs has established 8 regional
processing laboratories across India.
PathCare Labs in Hyderabad is spread in
over 20,000 sft, area adhering to CLP, CLSI, FDA
and WHO guidelines. It is
certified by National Accreditation Board for
Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL),
Government of India. PathCare Central Clinical
Reference Lab is equipped with State of the Art
equipment certified by US FDA and CE marked and is
backed with highly skilled professionals
comprising of Pathologists, Bio-chemists,
Microbiologists, Genetists and support staff for
sample accession and handling.
Path Care Labs is also all set in a road map to
expand in the field of diagnostics and the
infrastructure. It proposes to expand its services
to the segments like
India presence through Regional Labs (20
Hospital Lab Management at Small Hospitals
and Clinics (100 Labs)
Supporting Clinical Trails for diagnostic
Stem Cell Therapy through preservation of Cord
Blood in a bank certainly has great and promising
future for many.