Effects of Asphyxia on Colony-forming Ability of Hematopoietic Stem Cell of Cord Blood

Document Type : Original Article


1 Neonatal Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

2 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

3 Surgical Oncology Research Center, Imam Reza Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

4 Cancer Resaerch Center, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences, Shahrekord, Iran.


Background: Asphyxia is a medical situation resulting from the deprivation of oxygen to a newborn lasting long enough during the birth process to cause physical harm, especially to the brain. Human umbilical cord blood (UCB) is a well-established source of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) for allogeneic stem cell transplantation. A low level of O2 in neonates with asphyxia during labor can affect proliferation and differentiation of stem cells in cord blood.
Methods: The quality and colony-forming ability of hematopoietic stem cells in the cord blood of neonates with severe asphyxia with Apgar score 3-5or need to cardiac pulmonary resuscitation 5 min after delivery were compared with the group with normal Apgar score. Thereafter, hematopoietic stem cells were isolated, and cells were cultured in an enriched media (MethoCult H4435) special for HSPCs for 7 days to assess the growth and colony formation.
Results: Based on the results, there was a significant difference in the number of colonies of RBC (P=0.0016) and WBC precursor (P=0.006), in a plate with 104 cord blood hematopoietic stem cells in newborns exposed to hypoxemia during labor.
Conclusion: Umbilical cord blood is valuable for its content of stem cells. Severe hypoxia in the perinatal period does not negatively affect the viability of UCB-derived HSPCs to grow and form colonies. Furthermore, it was found that transient severe asphyxia does not exert negative effects on the banking quality of HSPCs for likely problems in the future.


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