Toddler Infused With Umbilical Cord Blood To Prevent Diabetes

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The Australian Associated Press (APP) has reported that a 20-month-old toddler has become the youngest person in the world to receive their own cord blood in order to prevent or delay the onset of Type 1 Diabetes.

Umbilical cord blood is blood which remains in the placenta and in the attached umbilical cord following the childbirth.

The reason for collecting Cord blood is because it contains immune cells and stem cells, which may be able to treat certain illnesses.  Parents have the option to store their baby’s cord blood at birth in either a private or public bank.

In this case, the child’s mother, Sonya Hinchion, said her daughter Lucy’s blood was stored at birth in the hope it would eventually help her seven-year-old sister, Ava, who had developed Type 1 diabetes at the age of 4.

However, after testing for two antibodies herself, Lucy became at high risk of developing the condition.

Hinchion described the reinfusion of all of Lucy’s cord blood as straightforward and easy.  She told APP,

“You’re putting all your eggs in one basket but without doing this trial and without putting yourself out there, we’re never going to learn.”

“The other risk is, she develops diabetes and you’ll kick yourself for not trying.” 

The Professor who heads the CORD study will follow Lucy every 3 to 6 months for the next 3 years to monitor her response to the reinfusion.

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