Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Immune Cell Banking FAQs

Who should consider banking their immune cells?

Anyone who is healthy should consider banking their immune cells while they are still young and healthy. Because cancer is often affected by genetic predisposition, those with a family history of cancer will have a higher chance of cancer and should consider banking their immune cells before showing any signs.

How long can my cells be stored for/viable for?

In theory, indefinitely. Once cells are at -196°C the cells are metabolically inactive, and ‘suspended in time’ practically forever. Life resumes again when the cells are thawed from cryogenic freeze. Scientific cell-banking data over the last 70 years supports this method of long-term storage, and its ongoing viability.

Can any other family members/relatives use my immune cells?

Unfortunately not. Due to the difference in the major histocompatibility antigen which causes graft rejection between different individuals, you can only use your cells for yourself.

What are the current uses of immune cells?

Currently, T-cell immunotherapy approved FDA known as CAR T-cell therapy is being used for advanced B-cell lymphoma. As of 2019, there are also more than 800 ongoing clinical trials using CAR T-cell therapy to treat over 40 different solid and blood cancers.

What other diseases can my immune cells be used to treat?

Scientific medical literature supports the use of immune cell therapy for almost any type of cancer. It has also shown promising results for patients with Alzheimer’s and Diabetes.

If I am already diagnosed with cancer is it too late to store?
Unfortunately, we do not accept clients for cell-banking services post cancer diagnosis at this time. However, we will work with survivors who have been “all-clear” of the disease for a minimum of five (5) years. We plan to offer alternative services to help post-diagnosed patients store immune cells prior to going into chemo- and radiation therapy in the future.
Should I still store my immune cells if I have a history of cancer in my family?

Absolutely. Our immune system begins to decline over time. This decline happens even more rapidly in individuals who have a genetic predisposition to cancer (as well as other diseases). Individuals who face a higher risk of disease should bank their immune cells while they are still relatively healthy.

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Disclaimer: The use of cord blood and immune cells is determined by the treating physician and manufacturer of the final products and is influenced by many factors, including the patient's medical condition, the characteristics of the sample, and whether the immune cells should be further modified or expanded. Cord blood has established uses in transplant medicine; however, its use in regenerative medicine is still being researched. There is no guarantee that potential medical applications being studied in the laboratory or clinical trials will become available. Cord tissue use is still in early research stages, and there is no guarantee that treatments using cord tissue will be available in the future. Cord tissue is stored whole. Additional processing prior to use will be required to extract and prepare any of the multiple cell types from cryopreserved cord tissue. Immune cells has established uses in certain blood cancer treatment; however, its use in solid cancer is still being researched. There is no guarantee that treatments being studied in the laboratory, clinical trials, or other experimental treatments will be available in the future.

HealthBanks cryopreserves immune cells that have been collected from an individual for potential future cellular therapy use. HealthBanks does not provide medical advice, treatment or care. The use of cryopreserved cells for future immunotherapies is not guaranteed. Much is yet unknown about the future of immunotherapy and the immune cells that have been cryopreserved. The use of cryopreserved cells by commercial manufacturers for CAR-T therapy production is not currently approved by the FDA. There is active research ongoing, however, there is no guarantee that your cryopreserved cells will have a future therapeutic use. Only your health care professional can help you evaluate whether your cells might be used and if so, how they might be used. HealthBanks and its shareholders, directors, officers, agents, employees, affiliates, network of providers and provider facilities, will not be liable to you or any other party for claims relating to sample collection or if your cells cannot be used, or if any harm, injury, damage or loss results from the use of your cells. For more information, please refer to HealthBanks Service Agreement.