• 66°

Deverapalli opens Southern Cord to ‘bank’ cord blood for future treatments

Chakri Deverapalli has opened Southern Cord, a company that offers an affordable method to collect, store and process umbilical cord stem cells. (CONTRIBUTED)
Chakri Deverapalli has opened Southern Cord, a company that offers an affordable method to collect, store and process umbilical cord stem cells. (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – Chakri Deverapalli of Madison has opened Southern Cord, a ‘bank’ for blood from infants’ umbilical cords.

Although a national company, Southern Cord focuses on helping individuals in the Tennessee Valley and Southeast. The facility is located at HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology.

Deverapalli’s goal is an affordable method of collecting, storing and processing umbilical cord stem cells. Currently, these cells treat about 80 life-threatening diseases, including leukemia. Research continues research for Parkinson’s disease, heart disease, juvenile diabetes and stroke.

“I grew up in India where medicine is practiced ‘cash’ — if you don’t have cash, you’re sheer out of luck. That bothered me. Blue-collar workers couldn’t afford treatment,” Deverapalli said.

With the cost near $5,000, “we had to work hard … to bring it down to less than $1,500,” Deverapalli said. He delayed opening his center “until we brought the cost down to less than a family’s cell phone bill. With our interest-free financing, it’s possible for families to bank cord blood”.

Cord blood is the blood remaining in a newborn’s umbilical cord after birth. Collecting blood “presents no pain or health risk to mother or child. It’s a valuable, non-controversial source of a child’s own adult stem cells,” he said.

Patients needing a stem cell transplant must rely on bone marrow, circulating blood or cord blood. Cord blood can only be harvested at birth. Bone marrow and circulating blood pose difficulties in donor matches.

Deverapalli, “an engineer with a degree in business,” said banking cord blood is simple and requires three steps:

* Enrollment — By phone or online to receive a collection kit for patient and doctor to collect and ship the blood.

* Collection — The patient notifies the doctor to collect blood immediately after birth.

* Shipment —  By courier with pickup from local hospitals.

At Southern Cord, the lab analyzes and processes the blood. Cells are stored within vapor-phase liquid nitrogen for cryo-preservation, then monitored constantly.

For more information, call 800-614-6183, email to info@southerncord.com or visit southerncord.com, Facebook/Southern Cord or Twitter.

Bob Jones High School

Rookie Rally reprises for successful tournament


Madison County Water Department announces meter reading and billing changes


Governor Ivey awards $5.6 million for law enforcement programs


The Camp is bringing Mardi Gras to Huntsville’s MidCity District


Huntsville Museum of Art continues special Black History Month programing


Madison Methodist Women to host inaugural marketplace event


Huntsville Botanical Garden to host 2023 APGA Education Symposium next week

Digital Version

The Madison Record digital version – Feb. 8, 2023


Huntsville Ballet Company to present HBC Off-Stage Feb. 17-19 at Dream Theatre

Bob Jones High School

Bob Jones and James Clemens advance to 7A Area 8 tournament title game

Bob Jones High School

Bob Jones AFJROTC excels at Hoover Drill Competition


Johnson repeats win in American Legion oratory


Petition for city manager special election being resubmitted after being dismissed


Barney, a facility dog, comforts and reassures students


Playground revamps underway for Madison elementaries


Large turnout expected for All-Girls State Chess Championship


Goldfish Swim School opens in Madison, plans to host free Community Family Swim Event Feb. 3


Mill Creek Robo-Crew take Breakthrough Award at UAH

Liberty Middle School

Liberty Lionettes awarded in hip-hop, pom at regionals

Bob Jones High School

American Legion Baseball organizing for new season

Discovery Middle School

Gifted Specialists fill broad needs of 20% of students


Mill Creek Greenpower Team motors to first place in Oxford

James Clemens High School

James Clemens Competition Cheer Team takes fourth state title


The celebration continues: Madison Street Festival awards grants to 16 Madison educational programs