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Stem Cell Count

More stem cells ensures a higher rate of transplant success and patient survival.

When stem cells are needed to treat a critical disease, doctors can effectively predict recovery and transplant success by evaluating two factors - HLA compatibility and stem cell count.

A transplant unit’s stem cell count in relation to the recipient’s body weight is called the cell dose, and it is the most significant predictor for overall transplant patient survival.1

Researchers from the University of Minnesota School of Medicine determined that cell dose was the one factor that directly affected the rate of recovery and the probability of transplant-related mortality.2

Stem cell dose greatly impacts the rate of platelet engraftment. Delays in platelet engraftment are the primary markers for the development of severe GVHD. Since GVHD is the leading cause of death following a stem cell transplant, patient survival and transplant success can be directly attributed to the number of stem cells received.

To ensure the highest stem cell count possible, it is important that cord blood is processed quickly. Cord blood processed 24 hours after collection results in a significant loss of viable stem cells.


1 Heimfeld S. (2003). Bone marrow transplantation: how important is CD34+ cell dose in HLA-identical stem cell transplantation? Leukemia (17) 856-858.

2 Wagner JE, Barker JN, DeFor TE, Baker KS, Blazar BR, Eide C, Goldman A, Kersey J, Krivit W, MacMillan ML, Orchard PJ, Peters C, Weisdorf DJ, Ramsay NKC, Davies SM. (2002). Transplantation of unrelated donor umbilical cord blood in 102 patients with malignant and nonmalignant diseases: influence of CD34+ cell dose and HLA disparity on treatment-related mortality. Blood (100) 1611-1618.