How Stem Cell Banking Works

Before delivery (enrolment)

Simply call, chat, or email us and we will send you an information pack, which will include a contract, a questionnaire, and a consent form. Then, you must return the signed documents to us.
Next steps:

  • The signed documents are checked by our doctor.
  • We send you the collection kit. No deposit is required.
  • Please check if your healthcare professional will collect your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue. If not, we can arrange a phlebotomist to perform the stem cell collection for you.
  • And finally, pack the collection kit with your hospital bag!

After delivery (stem cell collection)

When your baby is born:

  • Only when the baby is checked and okay will the healthcare professional collect the cord blood and cord tissue using our stem cell collection kit.
  • The collection kit contains everything required to collect the stem cells.
  • Collecting stem cells is easy and can be done before or after the placenta has been delivered and the umbilical cord cut.
  • A sample of the maternal blood is required and can be collected before or after your baby has been born. We are legally obligated to check the blood for viruses, such as HIV, syphilis, and hepatitis B and C.
  • According the instructions in the kit, the stem cells need to be packaged correctly for transportation to our laboratory.

  • Then, call us so we can arrange a courier to collect the collection kit from the hospital.
  • The courier will then deliver the kit to our laboratory for storage.

Upon arrival at our laboratory (testing)

When the cord blood and cord tissue arrive, they are assigned unique bar codes and transferred into a sterile environment for processing.

  • Cord blood and tissue are tested for contamination.
  • The number and viability of cord blood stem cells (CD34+) is assessed.
  • The viability of the cord tissue is assessed.
  • Small samples are stored for future testing if stem cells are required for transplantation.
  • Cord blood and tissue will be prepared for freezing.

During banking of the stem cells

The umbilical cord blood bags and tissue tubes are stored in aluminium canisters that are labelled with tamper-evident seals. They are then frozen in a controlled manner to prevent ice crystals forming in the cells. Once frozen, they are stored in liquid nitrogen.

After banking stem cells

Once we have successfully stored your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue and received the test results from the maternal blood sample, we will send you a full set of your results, which will include the following:

  • Maternal blood tests for HIV, syphilis, and hepatitis B and C
  • Microbiology test (cord blood and cord tissue)
  • Total leukocyte count
  • Viability of the cord blood stem cells
  • Total number of CD34+ cells (stem cells)

If the stem cells do not meet our acceptance criteria, we will discuss the available options with you.
If the test results are good, we will take your payment for enrolment, transport, processing, and storage.

Finally…

We will send you the storage certificate.