In the United States at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre CD34+ cells from umbilical cord blood were multiplied for the first time.
The number of cells after multiplication was 164 times bigger than their initial number. The amount of CD 34+ cells (whose percentage in umbilical cord blood is about 10% of all stem cells) conditions the speed of restoring the haematologic system after a transplantation of umbilical cord stem cells. The number of cells was a limit in a broader use of umbilical cord blood for tranplantations.
After multiplying the cells, American scientists transplanted two units of umbilical cord blood for each of 10 patients with acute myelogenous leukaemia (aged 3 – 43). One of the units contained the amount of CD34+ cells increased, thanks to multiplying. Then the restoration speed of the haematologic system was checked, as well as possible unwelcome effects with these patients in comparison with the control group who received a standard transplantation. It turned out the restoration of the hematologic system for the patients who had the multiplied cells transplanted was two times faster (14 days comparing to 28 days).
This research was published in the prestige magazine Nature Medicine as the first research concerning transplantations of multiplied umbilical cord blood cells with people.