For patients with leukaemia - and other blood conditions – stem cell transplants can mean the difference between life and death.

But 18 years since the first cord blood transplants were performed in the UK, public knowledge on this life-saving process is still sorely lacking. A study of over 4,000 people found that nearly a third (32%) of Britons did not know you can store umbilical cord blood and tissue, while the vast majority (85%) agreed there is a lack of awareness.

The YouGov research – commissioned by Smart Cells – found that this resulted in a major shortage of stem cells in the UK; only 9% of patients stored cord blood when they gave birth; 2% privately and 6% donated to the NHS.