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Stem Cells International
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 276193, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.4061/2011/276193
Review Article

Cord Blood-Derived Hematopoietic Stem/Progenitor Cells: Current Challenges in Engraftment, Infection, and Ex Vivo Expansion

1Department of Surgery, Shriners Hospitals for Children, University of Texas Medical Branch, 815 Market Street, Galveston, TX 77550, USA
2Institute for Translational Sciences, University of Texas Medical Branch, 815 Market Street, Galveston, TX 77550, USA
3Sealy Center for Molecular Medicine, University of Texas Medical Branch, 815 Market Street, Galveston, TX 77550, USA
4Department of Pediatrics, University of Texas Medical Branch, 815 Market Street, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

Received 10 December 2010; Revised 7 February 2011; Accepted 25 February 2011

Academic Editor: Gerald A. Colvin

Copyright © 2011 Katsuhiro Kita et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Umbilical cord blood has served as an alternative to bone marrow for hematopoietic transplantation since the late 1980s. Numerous clinical studies have proven the efficacy of umbilical cord blood. Moreover, the possible immaturity of cells in umbilical cord blood gives more options to recipients with HLA mismatch and allows for the use of umbilical cord blood from unrelated donors. However, morbidity and mortality rates associated with hematopoietic malignancies still remain relatively high, even after cord blood transplantation. Infections and relapse are the major causes of death after cord blood transplantation in patients with hematopoietic diseases. Recently, new strategies have been introduced to improve these major problems. Establishing better protocols for simple isolation of primitive cells and ex vivo expansion will also be very important. In this short review, we discuss several recent promising findings related to the technical improvement of cord blood transplantation.