The key difference between cord blood and cord tissue is that cord blood is the blood that remains in the umbilical cord and placenta after childbirth while cord tissue is the insulating material surrounding the vessels of the umbilical cord.
In fact, here, the term cord refers the umbilical cord. The umbilicus is the structure connecting the placenta and the baby. It is the lifeline of the baby. During delivery, the baby usually comes first. The placenta and the other tissues are expelled within 30 minutes of delivery. Cord blood reveals the baby’s blood group. Cord blood cells have stem cells, which can differentiate into blood cells such as red cells and immune cells. The cord tissue taken from the umbilical cord has a lot of stem cells and connective tissues. These cells are useful in tissue repair.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What Cord Blood
3. What Cord Tissue
4. Similarities Between Cord Blood and Cord Tissue
5. Side by Side Comparison – Cord Blood vs Cord Tissue in Tabular Form
What is Cord Blood?
Cord blood is the blood remaining in the umbilical cord and placenta after childbirth. The volume of the cord blood ranges between 80 to 120 ml or 1/3 of a cup to ½ of a cup. It is a small volume. However, it contains a lot of hematopoietic stem cells. In other words, it is a good source of stem cells: undifferentiated cells. These stem cells can be differentiated into blood cells and immune cells and form the blood and immune system.
Moreover, stem cells have great potential to treat various types of diseases. Hence, the stem cells are isolated from the cord blood, which is collected on delivery, and preserved for future use. It is easy to extract the cord blood into a sterilized bag using a surgical needle.
What is Cord Tissue?
Cord tissue is the actual umbilical cord that connects the baby to the placenta. It contains a lot of stem cells and connective tissues. The stem cells of the cord tissue are mesenchymal stem cells. Mesenchymal stem cells can form a person’s nervous system, sensory organs, circulatory tissues, skin, bone, cartilage, etc. Therefore, these cells are useful in tissue repair in the cases of bone marrow failure, some type of cancers and organ failures, etc. Moreover, they are also useful in treating spinal cord damage and cartilage damage as well.
Since cord tissue is a good source of stem cells, during the childbirth, surgeons collect the cord tissue and preserve it for future use in disease therapy and other medical issues.
What are the Similarities Between Cord Blood and Cord Tissue?
- Cord blood and cord tissue are rich in stem cells.
- These stem cells are important for stem cell therapy.
- Thus, the banks collect and save the cord blood and the cord tissue after childbirth.
- Unsaved cord blood or tissue goes as clinical waste.
What is the Difference Between Cord Blood and Cord Tissue?
Cord blood is the blood remaining in the umbilical cord after childbirth while cord tissue is the actual umbilical cord. So, this is the key difference between cord blood and cord tissue. More to this, a further difference between cord blood and cord tissue is that the amount of stem cells in the cord blood is lesser than that in the cord tissue. Furthermore, cord blood is collected from the blood in the umbilical cord while cord tissue is collected from the cord itself.
Moreover, the cord blood contains the specific stem cells, the hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), which form the blood and immune cells in the body. On the other hand, the stem cells found in the cord tissue are mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that develop into skeletal tissues. Hence, this is also a significant difference between cord blood and cord tissue. Considering the usage, the stem cells taken from the cord blood is useful in treating blood-related diseases such as anemia and leukemia, autoimmune diseases, metabolic disorders and certain types of cancer. On the other hand, stem cells taken from the cord tissue is useful in treating diseases such as skeletal diseases and injuries, inflammatory diseases, heart diseases, spinal cord injuries, certain types of cancer, etc. Hence, based on usage, this is a difference between cord blood and cord tissue.
Summary – Cord Blood vs Cord Tissue
The umbilical cord is the pathway that connects the baby to his mother. Baby gets nutrients via the cord from the mother. Umbilical cord blood and tissue are rich in stem cells. Cord blood is the blood remaining in the cord after childbirth while cord tissue is the actual umbilical cord. Both cord tissue and blood contain millions of stem cells that are useful in tissue repair and to treat many diseases. Stem cells extracted from the cord blood are useful in treating blood-related diseases while stem cells extracted from cord tissue are useful in treating skeletal diseases and injuries, inflammatory diseases, heart diseases, spinal cord injuries, certain types of cancer. Thus, this summarizes the difference between cord blood and cord tissue.
1. “Cord Blood.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 21 Apr. 2019, Available here.
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