Umbilical Cord Blood and PA

Posted on: Tue, 07/10/2001 - 6:29am
Fran's picture
Joined: 08/09/1999 - 09:00

I had not even thought of this until yesterday! When our 7 year old daughter was born, we had her umbilical cord blood stored at a Cord Blood Bank.

For those of you who may not be familiar with this procedure, when your child is born, the umbilical cord is usually discarded. However, in 1994, it was discovered that removal and storage of this blood in a Cord Blood Bank makes it feasible to save a child's life (or possibly that of a mother or sibling) if this blood is ever needed as a transplant to treat/cure a disease. You can also donate your newborn's cord blood to another family via the blood bank.

Cord blood is unique because it contains the earliest, safely collected, naive stem cells. It is one of the richest sources of stem cells and may be used to treat anything from leukemia to brain tumors. (For more information, check into [url=""][/url] AND if you are expecting a child, I thoroughly URGE you to do so!)

Cord blood banking is the process of collecting the blood from your baby's umbilical cord immediately after delivery, and freezing it for long-term cryogenic storage. The potential for treatment of various diseases is incredible with research being conducted for future potential treatment of Alzheimer's, Stroke, Diabetes, and Spinal Cord injuries just to name a few.

Anyway, I had not given any thought to this in relation to our daughter's peanut allergy until now. I have contacted the Cord Blood Registry and the University of Arizona with a variety of questions regarding whether these stem cells contain allergens.

Do any of you know if allergens are present in stem cells?? My main concern is, what if we ever had to use the cord blood (God forbid) and a vaccine or cure were developed for PA...if our daughter were not peanut allergic any longer and this blood were used, would this make the PA reoccur (or make the recipient peanut allergic)? (Guess I was thinking in the worst case scenario -- can you imagine someone going through a transplant and then eventually not even thinking about their prior peanut allergy and then, after all that, eating a peanut product only to die from anaphylactic shock??! Sounds crazy, I know, BUT...

Do any of you have any information/medical knowledge in this area? I would venture to say, "Could the stem cells be used to cure PA", BUT, I think I would elect to keep the blood for another disease or injury, if you know what I mean...I don't think a transplant is the answer to this one!!)

I'll keep you posted on what I find out.

Stay Safe,


Posted on: Thu, 07/12/2001 - 3:22am
hbsmom's picture
Joined: 04/23/2000 - 09:00

Interesting thread. I have no answers but am very interested in what you find out.

Posted on: Thu, 07/12/2001 - 4:23am
AlwaysAvoidAnaphylaxis's picture
Joined: 06/23/2001 - 09:00

Very interesting! Please let us all know what you find out.
I will also look into this from my end.

Posted on: Thu, 07/12/2001 - 5:21am
Fran's picture
Joined: 08/09/1999 - 09:00

I have contacted Dr. David T. Harris, Professor of Microbiology & Immunology at the University of Arizona. Dr. Harris is also the Science Director of "Cord Blood Registry" ([url][/url]) and originally handled the transfer and storage of our daughter's cord blood in 1994.
I have also contacted Dr. Hugh A. Sampson (whom I am sure you are familiar with) at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in NY. He, of course, is an expert on peanut allergy.
I will keep you informed on everything I find out.
Stay Safe,

Posted on: Fri, 07/13/2001 - 2:57am
Fran's picture
Joined: 08/09/1999 - 09:00

Here's the latest on what I've found out.
The following is the response from Dr. Hugh Sampson at Mt. Sinai (he has been absolutely wonderful in responding and giving time to this issue)~
Dear Mrs. Stevens,
Regarding your daughter's blood test, was the test a CAP-RAST or
UniCAP test? The result should be reported in kU/L and is recorded
between <0.35 and >100 kU/L.
If you ingested peanuts during your pregnancy, there is a chance that
some of the T lymphocytes in the cord blood would be reactive to
peanut, but whether they would induce the development of peanut
allergy is unknown - but unlikely. They would not contain the peanut
allergen. The stem cells, which might be used for a variety of
reasons, should not be sensitized to peanut nor contain peanut
I hope this is helpful.
Hugh A. Sampson, M.D.
So, as you can see, Dr. Sampson feels that it is unlikely that PA would develop and the stem cells should not contain the peanut allergen. (And yes, I, like many of you I am sure, had ingested peanut products while pregnant and nursing, unfortunately.) BTW, my daughter scored >100 for peanut on her last RAST test, and, as per Dr. Sampson's request to me today, I will be forwarding a copy of her lab report to him when received for his review. (I'm not sure if it was a CAP-RAST, since the pediatrician calls it a "RAST Mixed Nut Profile" -- we wanted to have her tested for ALL nuts, but they only tested for peanut, of course, and then coconut, almonds, pecan and sesame seed -- these last 4 came back "normal". Don't know why they only chose these foods and not walnuts, etc.!?!
I then received a call from Matt Hethcoat at the Cord Blood Registry (who has also gone the extra mile in providing information)and he confirmed Dr. Sampson's beliefs. He went on to say that the cures to leukemia and other dreaded diseases have been phenomenal with new discoveries for stem cell use every day. He said it may even be possible in the future to grow an organ from these stem cells!
We discussed the use of the stem cells for the possibility of PA cure -- this, of course, would require some of the cells to be used in a transplant. This is, however, purely hypothetical and would be an extremely unlikely approach that one would want to use for an allergy! Matt agreed that IF this were a possibility, this would again be very experimental (not something I think we'd want to consider, but very interesting!). However, he will be checking with Dr. David Harris to get his feedback on this "idea" and will let me know his findings...I will certainly keep you posted!
(In the meantime, I once again urge you to check out the Cord Blood Registry site and if you are expecting, save your child's cord can save lives!)
Stay Safe,

Posted on: Sat, 02/12/2011 - 1:25pm
paullisan's picture
Joined: 02/12/2011 - 20:23

I noticed that the last post you had regarding this issue was 10 years ago. Any updates?

Peanut Free Store

More Articles

You already know that if you or your child has a peanut allergy you need to avoid peanut butter. Some...

There are many reasons why you may want to substitute almond flour for wheat flour in recipes. Of course, if you have a...

Are you looking for peanut-free candies as a special treat for a child with...

Do you have a child with peanut allergies and an upcoming birthday? Perhaps you'd like to bake a...

Most nut butters provide all the same benefits: an easy sandwich spread, a great dip for veggies, a fun addition to a smoothie. But not...