Watch this story of how Jenny and Ryan Levine saw a dramatic turnaround in their daughter, Chloe’s, cerebral palsy after being infused with her own cord blood stem cells. The treatment of cerebral palsy using cord blood is still being investigated worldwide. We've shared the outcomes of studies using cord blood in the treatment of cerebral palsy from Israel, Korea, and Australia as well as some of the latest results from a series of studies being conducted at Duke University. Chloe was one of the children fortunate enough to take part in one of Duke's clinical trials.
Jenny Levine: Chlöe was born healthy, perfect, perfect little baby, and about nine months, we started noticing things: that she couldn't hold her bottle and her right fist was always very tight.
Ryan Levine: And then when it came time to crawl, she never crawled. She would do what we called the "Chlöe shuffle." Which was, kind of, put her left front leg in front of her and almost propel herself by moving her leg forward and the right leg would drag behind. It was almost as if a bulb went off in the doctor's head as we're showing him this and he's saying, Oh, that's not right. We're gonna order a C.A.T. scan. We remember him throwing the x-rays up in the office and saying, You see this? You see this? This particular area that's black is a void in her brain.
Jenny Levine: When we found out about her diagnosis, that she had cerebral palsy, part of me died that day.
Ryan Levine: The turning point was, my sister happen to call me; I was traveling.
Jenny Levine: Well, I believe it was divine intervention if i can say that.
Ryan Levine: Hey, Ryan, I got this great email, and I just forward it to you. It's about a little boy that lives in Sacramento that has C.P. and did a stem cell re-infusion at Duke University. They're seeing some results, and you got to check this out.
Jenny Levine: Re-infusion, because you are re-infusing the child's own blood, putting it back into their body. It's cord blood, so it's the remaining blood left in the cord and the placenta once the child is delivered.
Ryan Levine: The infusion itself of the stem cells takes a very brief, short period of time. The next day, on our way home, when Chlöe, for the first time, decided to speak or was able to speak her nickname, which is “Coco,” and so we both turned to each other, we're driving down the highway, Did we hear what we thought we heard?
Jenny Levine: Her saying “Coco,” which we'd worked months and months and months with therapist just to try to get her to say that one word—she said it. You know, that was just my prayers are being answered.
Without the re-infusion of her cord blood stem cells, I truly believe we'd be living a completely different life. Chlöe would be very far from where she is today—physically, emotionally, mentally.
Ryan Levine: The fact is, the cord blood stem cells are there, they're thrown away if you don't use them, and there is no harm done to anybody by storing them.
Jenny Levine: Pure pride. I'm so proud of her. She is the strongest little person that I have ever known in my life. She has a determination that, I can’t even describe; I can’t describe it. She's just an amazing, amazing soul. Just like a baby is a miracle, those stem cells within that cord are just as much of a miracle to me. That's just amazing. I'm Jenny Levinean, and adult stem cells collected from my daughter’s umbilical cord blood changed her life forever.