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Will stem cells in cord blood, amniotic fluid, bone marrow and peripheral blood soon be unnecessary in transplantation?


There are now various sources of stem cells. Those derived from blastocysts, named embryo stem (ES) cells, have attracted most attention and are highly multipotent. Human cord blood became widely used as a source of stem cells with differing properties to ES cells and their therapeutic application has grown steadily as they are stored in increasing numbers of stem cell banks. Other sources of human stem cells are derived from peripheral blood and amniotic fluid. They may arise from a common origin in epiblast. This review stresses the use of cord blood stem cells, but describes new approaches which may supersede the use of most stem cells. The advantages and disadvantages of these various classes are described in relation to potential methods involving gene conversion to change somatic cells to ES cells.

Keywords: amniotic stem cells, cord blood stem cells, embryo stem cells, grafting, peripheral blood stem cells, stem cell banks.


a Chief Editor, Reproductive BioMedicine Online, Duck End Farm, Dry Drayton, Cambridge CB23 8DB, UK

b Chief Scientific Officer, UK Cord Blood Bank, 1 Harley Street, London, UK

* Corresponding author.

# Original publication: Edwards, R.G. and Hollands, P., 2007. Will stem cells in cord blood, amniotic fluid, bone marrow and peripheral blood soon be unnecessary in transplantation? Reprod. BioMed. Online 14, 396–401.