Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Leukemia & Lymphoma

Font Size

Stem Cell Treatment for Leukemia Improved

Transplant Technique Speeds Immune System Recovery

Larger, Longer Cord Blood Study Planned

The researchers will attempt to do this in a much larger clinical trial.

If that trial is successful, Delaney says the approach may prove useful not just for the treatment of blood-related cancers, but for the treatment of other conditions where white blood cell counts are low.

Stem cell transplant expert James Gajewski, MD, of Oregon Health Sciences University, tells WebMD that the new research addresses one of two major issues surrounding umbilical cord blood transplants.

“Every other attempt to expand (cord blood) stem cells has basically failed,” he says. “This is really the first significant proof that these cells can be expanded, and this group should be commended for doing brilliant work.”

But he says it remains to be seen if cord-blood derived stem cells can adequately mature and become useful in the immune systems of adult patients.

"This study wasn’t designed to address this issue, but a longer, larger study should,” he says.

Even if larger studies are positive, it is still not clear if stem umbilical cord blood transplants will ever be commercially viable, he says.

The banks that store umbilical cords are funded by the government. If government funding goes away, Gajewski says cord blood banks probably will too unless cord blood transplants prove useful for much more than the treatment of blood-related cancers.

“For the cord blood banks, the great hope for the future is that there will be many other uses for this treatment, such as repairing damaged hearts or livers,” he says. “But that is a long way away.”

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

stem cells
What are they and why do we need them?
Lung cancer xray
See it in pictures, plus read the facts.
sauteed cherry tomatoes
Fight cancer one plate at a time.
Ovarian cancer illustration
Do you know the symptoms?
Vitamin D
New Treatments For Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma
Lifestyle Tips for Depression Slideshow
Pets Improve Your Health