New Research Links Umbilical Cord Blood to Motor Function Improvement in Children with Cerebral Palsy
The Emmes Corporation today announced its statistical and data management support of a clinical trial that offers new hope for children with cerebral palsy (CP). Stephen Wease and Dr. Beth Blackwell joined a team of prominent researchers from Duke University Medical Center to test whether umbilical cord blood would improve motor skills function in children suffering from the disorder.
According to Wease, Emmes project leader, “The phase II trial showed promising results, and we’re eager for the next phases of research to further our understanding of this encouraging new mechanism for treating children with CP.”
Cerebral palsy is the most prevalent childhood motor disorder. It is most often the result of an in-utero or perinatal brain injury, and the impact can range from mild motor skill limitations to severe mobility issues.
The research demonstrated improvements in motor function a year after the injection of a high dose of stem cells from a child’s own cord blood. Future research opportunities will address the benefit of multiple doses and the use of donor cells.
“Umbilical cord blood is widely viewed as a treatment option for diseases like cancer, and new research findings suggest it could have therapeutic value in promoting the formation of new neural connections and improving motor function in young children with CP,” said Dr. Joanne Kurtzberg, M.D., the senior author of the study and director of Duke’s Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplant Program and the Robertson Clinical and Translational Therapy Program.
Emmes served as the Statistical and Data Coordinating Center for the clinical trial.
“We selected EMMES to provide these services because of their outstanding reputation and high quality of their work,” added Kurtzberg. “Given the novelty of the study, it was critical to have the best organization evaluating and interpreting the data.”
The Robertson Foundation and The Marcus Foundations funded the study.
According to Dr. Anne Lindblad, president and chief executive officer of Emmes, “We are proud to work with the outstanding team at Duke University Medical Center in identifying innovative therapies for children with CP. We look forward to continuing to unlock the potential of cord blood research.”
About the Research
The paper was published in Stem Cells Translational Medicine.
We collaborate with our clients to produce valued, trusted scientific research. Our team members at Emmes are passionate about making a difference in the quality of human health, and we have supported more than a thousand studies across a diverse range of diseases since our formation in 1977. Our research is contributing to a healthier world. For more information, visit the Emmes website at www.emmes.com.