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What questions should parents ask a Family Bank about cord tissue banking?

  • Does the bank collect the whole umbilical cord or only a segment?
  • Does the bank freeze the umbilical cord intact or process it before storage?
  • Does the bank store a tissue product (for example minced cord) or a cellular product (isolated cells from the tissue)?
  • If the bank stores a tissue product, have they validated that upon thawing this tissue they can retrieve viable stem cells? This means not just testing for markers of stem cells but confirming there are cells that can grow in culture.
  • If the bank stores isolated cells, what tests do they run to characterize the population of cells that go into storage?
  • Does the bank culture the isolated cells to expand their numbers before storage?
  • Does the bank offer any guarantees about the number of or quality of cord tissue stem cells that the bank will provide if the client requests them for therapy?
  • Does the bank have AABB accreditation for tissue processing (a somatic cell activity)?