The umbilical cord contains a jelly like material within its walls called Wharton’s jelly. Scientific research has shown that this is one of the richest sources of mesenchymal stem cells capable of self-renewal and differentiation. Being in a naïve state, these mesenchymal stem cells appear to be better than similar mesenchymal stem cells derived from bone marrow. They are reported to have minimal or no adverse effects.
Several clinical trials are under way using autologous bone marrow and umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells with gratifying results.