Because Google controls over 70% of online searches, it is an incredible resource for analyzing online search behavior. Recently, the search term “Cord Blood” became one of the 20 most expensive keywords on Google Adwords, an incredible finding given the variety and total volume of searches that occur through Google.
Since the first stem cell transplant occurred more than 50 years ago (1957), there has been a nearly exponential increase in stem cell transplants, and in late 2012, the millionth stem cell transplant occurred, a landmark event in stem cell medicine.
Cord blood stem cells have distinct advantages over other sources, including that they are:
- More adaptable
- More pure
These traits result from cord blood stem cells being the earliest (non-controversial) stem cells that can be extracted from a living human, and therefore haven’t been exposed to viruses, chemicals, or pollutants in the environment that can alter cell function.
While bone marrow stem cells are the most commonly recognized type of stem cell used in transplant, cord blood stem cells are increasingly showing advantages over other stem cell sources, including reduced immune reactions (such as GvHD) and a greater flexibility for HLA-mismatched cord blood units to be used in transplant.
However, many expectant parents still do not fully understand the significance of cord blood storage or grasp the technical aspects that characterize it. This is also true of many investors who are evaluating opportunities for investing in the cord blood banking market.
The cord blood banking industry is a rapidly evolving industry. Every month there are major events occurring in the sector that shift industry dynamics. Often, these events are announcements of technical or scientific advancements. Sometimes they are announcements of major industry alliances. Occasionally, they are announcements of a new industry competitor, a major milestone, or a significant funding award.
For those of us interested in the cord blood industry, tracking these shifting industry dynamics is of paramount importance. For this reason, this post covers the most significant cord blood industry news events as of February 2015.
The cord blood banking industry has grown increasingly complex over the past few years. While rates of growth within the industry were robust during the early 2000’s, it is no longer the rapid growth market that it used to be. There is now increased market competition, tighter regulatory standards, more substantial government oversight, and increased public scrutiny given toward cord blood industry practices.
While support for the private cord blood banking industry is mixed among parents and obstetricians, the industry appears to be gaining support on the legislative front. A major congressional decision is underway, as the “Family Cord Blood Banking Act” was introduced to the 113th Congress.