Cord blood banking refers to collection and preservation of blood derived from the umbilical cord, thus saved for future therapeutic and research applications. Umbilical cord blood is observed to be a potential source of progenitor cells, which can be used for reconstitution of tissue, organs and other functional areas. Cord blood transplantation is being recommended for a variety of diseases which include conditions such as leukemia, sarcoma, lymphoma, immune conditions and even metabolic disorders. Over the last two decades, the global stem cell therapeutics industry has experienced impressive growth.
Stem cells are the progenitors of all hematopoietic cells that generate red and white blood cells and blood platelets. These cells can be isolated and further transferred to a patients suffering from serious blood disorders and other chronic conditions. Moreover, cord blood stem cells are observed to be convenient to harvest and can be stored for decades, their rejection rate is less than that of bone marrow transplant and possess low infection risk. Large and easy availability of cord blood units also widens the scope of transplant options, especially for patients with mixed ethnicity. However, cord blood banking market in LATAM is in process of evolution and expected to grow at significant rate due to favorable changes expected to carry out by revising government policies and regulations.
The LATAM cord blood banking market is be categorized on the type of storage option into public and private cord blood banking. High incidence of genetic disorders and better apprehension of such diseases due to availability of high end diagnostic services has been highly instrumental in rendering market dominance to private cord blood banking services. However, relatively high service charges for cord blood banking and the general opinion among physicians about less possibility of the use of such stored units may restrict the growth of private cord banking services market in a few countries of LATAM such as Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Peru and others.
Advancement in stem cell therapy research has encouraged the practice of cord blood banking in Latin America due to rapidly increasing technological and infrastructural development in the region. Major countries such as Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia are focusing on expansion of cord blood bank networks. Most of the cord blood banks are supported by government funding. However, several private cord blood banks have already entered the market and many others are planning to enter the market in Latin America in the near future.
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Some of the established cord blood banks in Latin America also operate in the field of tissue engineering, non-invasive prenatal tests and stem cell development. Numerous countries in Latin America are on the verge of taking initiatives to decrease the drawbacks of public and private banking by implementing a hybrid model. The hybrid cord blood banking model is expected to involve storage of the sample in two portions. One portion is for the usage of the child or solely its close family member, while the other portion is stored as public donation.
Key players of LATAM cord blood banking services market are America Cell Biobank, Inc., Banco de Cordon Umbilical (BCU), CrioCenter, and Redcord S.A. among others.