Patients’ Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Stem Cells
1. Why would I want to store my normal stem cells and where would they come from?
You are never any younger than you are today and most studies have shown that younger cells may be more versatile and healthier than when derived from an older individual. Although not yet available, it is possible that newer and developing technologies will assist the re-growth of damaged body parts as the body ages or is injured. Thus, it is a type of “Bio-insurance”. Stem cells can be readily obtained from fat or skin that have been surgically removed, but they can also come from bone marrow or other sources.
2. How much does it cost to process and store my stem cells?
The costs are partially dependent on the tissue source and the amount and quality of starting tissue.
- Collection kits for stem cells are $120-$160 each, plus shipping.
- Processing of the tissue costs $1500-$2000 per sample.
- Cryovial numbers will usually vary from 6 to 12 vials depending on the source of stem cells and the original volume of the tissue. Storage fees are $10 per cryovial per month.
3. How would my stem cells be stored?
Cells are stored in a cryopreservation “suspended animation” state in an ultralow liquid nitrogen freezer under conditions and in solutions that minimize ice formation in the cells and surround them with a protective shell using proprietary cryopreservation media and storage technologies developed by INCELL.
4. Do I need a contract to process and store my stem cells?
Yes, you do. A contract is provided as part of the collection kit and needs to be signed by you and your doctor prior to sending the tissue sample for processing.
5. Who would own my stem cells that are stored?
You would own the cells while you continue to pay the storage fees annually with the contractual caveat that the cells would revert to other research or clinical use by INCELL if you are unable or unwilling to pay the storage fees. If you died while the cells were being stored your estate would own the cells and as long as it continued to pay the storage fees annually. The contract you sign will specify these issues and the fact that the cells would revert to other research or clinical use by INCELL, and INCELL would assume ownership, if the storage fees are not paid.