Umbilical Cord Blood Therapy Potentiated with Erythropoietin for Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebo-controlled Trial

February 1st, 2013 | Posted by admin in Research

The following is a 19 page case study regarding the following topic as it relates to Cerebral Palsy:  Allogeneic umbilical cord blood (UCB) has therapeutic potential for cerebral palsy (CP). Concomitant administration of recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) may boost the efficacy of UCB, as it has neurotrophic effects. The objectives of this study were to assess the safety and efficacy of allogeneic UCB potentiated with rhEPO in children with CP.

In addition to the case study itself, Ed Drambel, one of the co-founders of Let’s Cure CP has written his own summary in regards to the case study which is listed on this page.

To View The Case Study Click Here: Umbilical Cord Blood Therapy Potentiated with Erythropoietin for Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebocontrolled Trial

Summary by Ed Drambel

First, they used matching cord blood, not the patients’ own banked Cord Blood cells but matched using Human Leukocyte antigen (HLA) and administering cyclosporine for 4 weeks (common drug used for transplant patients to fight off rejection).  They also used erythropoietin (rhEPO- a protein that controls red blood cell production and is thought to help improve stem cell efficacy.  It is also a performance-enhancing drug that many athletes use.)

They had three arms to the study, with patients aging from 10 months to 10 years of age.  All patients received PT twice a day and OT once a day for 1 month.  Patients were recorded using a digital camcorder.  MRI’s, PET/CT imaging and DTI were obtained.  Patients were followed for one year and they measured motor, neurological and brain improvements

1.)    Matched Cord Blood Stem cells with rhEPO (31 patients)

2.)    RhEPO only (33 patients)

3.)    Placebo- patient was just given saline solution (32 patients)

Adverse events- Unfortunately, there was one death observed in the Cord Blood matching group and it was NOT related to the stem cells.  She was 25 months old and it occurred 14 weeks after treatment.  She was improving up to her unfortunate demise.

There was also an increased incidence of pneumonia and irritability in the cord blood group, but they believe it is more attributed to the use of cyclosporine.

Functional Improvements (charts start on page 14 on actual case study)

All 3 groups showed significant improvements over time.  However THERE WAS A SIGNIFICANT STATISTICAL IMPROVEMTNT IN ALL CATEGORIES OBSERVED BY THE CORD BLOOB STEM CELL GROUP!  Also, they separated the data more based on age, HLA matching, pre-term vs full term.  The earlier you treat, the better the results.   Older children only showed improvements in the mental scale during the 0-3 month period.  Pre-term group improved more with their motor skills, also the more severe the CP, the better the mental improvement.  Obviously, the better the HLA matching yielded better outcomes.

The PET showed noticeable increases in the basal ganglia and thalamus in the Cord Blood group.

The most notable improvements in motor and mental scores occurred during the 3 month follow up, but were observed as early as one month.

Don’t forget to view the case study here: Umbilical Cord Blood Therapy Potentiated with Erythropoietin for Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebocontrolled Trial

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