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LifeCell launches Cord Tissue Banking in India

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LifeCell International – India’s first & the largest stem cell banking service provider and a pioneer in stem cell research, technology & therapy – announced the launch of Umbilical cord tissue banking service in India. The technology to harness the potential of Umbilical Cord Tissue, a rich source of Mesenchymal stem cells was developed in-house at the LifeCell R&D center at Chennai., India. With this launch, LifeCell achieved a considerable technology landmark in the field of Regenerative science & healthcare industry in India.

Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) from bone marrow have been at the forefront of therapeutic strategies for a number of hitherto incurable ailments like Heart Disease, Type I Diabetes, Crohn’s Disease, GVHD, Osteoarthritis and Stroke. Further, MSCs from Cord tissue showed additional therapeutic potential in animal models to treat Parkinsonism, Skeletal muscle injury, Limb ischemia, Retinal nerve degeneration. Hence, these cord tissue MSCs appear to be superior to bone marrow MSCs and can be a potential substitute for them.

Advantages of Mesenchymal Stemcells:

In a unit population of cells MSCs in the umbilical cord tissue are present in much higher numbers when compared with the bone marrow. These cells have shorter doubling time. Also the HLA ABC antigens are less of an issue with cord MSCs when compared with bone marrow MSCs.

Talking at the occasion,
Mr. Mayur Abhaya, President and Executive Director, LifeCell International, said, “We at LifeCell are very excited about this landmark achievement that we have made at our R&D center, by developing the technology to harvest and store Umbilical Cord Tissue in India. With additional service of cord tissue banking, , clinical trials, R&D, therapy solutions we are the only company in India providing comprehensive stem cells solutions. This will give us a competitive edge to tap the potential market. In a country like India with over 40 million births every year, the potential is immense and we see a huge opportunity ahead. We envision a 30% percent growth in our enrolments by 2010. Our revenue for this year is expected to close by Rs.400 Million.”

According to Dr. Ajit, Chief Scientific Officer, LifeCell International, “Previously, after the collection of the umbilical cord blood, the remaining solid cord tissue was normally discarded. However, this cord tissue is a rich source of Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and we have invested two years of time in developing and validating a proprietary technology at our in-house R&D center for collection and storage of the cord tissue. These MSCs from cord tissue are superior to bone marrow MSCs, as these cells are fetal in nature and therefore more robust. Besides, the collection process is non invasive, painless and usually devoid of infection.” Added Dr. Ajit

Over the conversation about the awareness and acceptance of stem cells in India Mr. Mayur added, “Recent success stories of stem cells, daily news on research findings and breakthrough in clinical trials etc., are validating the potential of stem cells thereby increasing the demand for storing the baby’s stem cell for future potential use. The medical fraternity has been playing a vital role in supporting and spreading knowledge and awareness on this concept.”

Storing and cost at LifeCell

Customers who want to store their cord tissue have a range of options with LifeCell. They may choose to bank the processed stem cells from the Cord Tissue for a ready use or store the cord tissue which can be used to harvest stem cells later for therapy.

Preserving the cord tissue comes as a package along with cord blood banking service of LifeCell at a cost of Rs.44,600/- for the first year and Rs.3,500/- every year as annual storage fee. However, if the client prefers to process the cord tissue and store the harvested stem cells, the process will cost Rs.63,100/- for the first year and Rs.5,500/- every year as annual storage fee. Both these options include processing and cryo-preserving the cord blood stem cells which is the basic service. Clients could also go for the option of one-time storage fee of Rs.79,000/- upfront for storing cord blood and cord tissue and Rs.1,17,500 for storing cord blood along with processing of cord tissue.

LifeCell’s key differentiator has been quality and service and with a technology tie-up with the Cryo-Cell International, the world’s first stem cell bank, LifeCell has the expertise of technology to maintain the best quality which has also been acknowledged and accredited by AABB. LifeCell offers round-the-clock service and is the only stem cell bank in India offering this service to over 40 centres in India & abroad.

 


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