The Gift of Life Center for Cell and Gene Therapy is a state-of-the-art laboratory offering moderate and high complexity testing, cell processing and cryopreservation services. This in-house facility provides the benefit of regulatory compliance and assured quality from the outset, while avoiding the need to transport collected products to an off-site facility for preliminary characterization, processing, and target cell isolation procedures.
The lab is equipped with a central UPS with an industrial class backup generator, redundant HVAC, redundant flow cytometry (Navios and Cytoflex) redundant hematology (Sysmex and Coulter), redundant refrigeration, redundant BSCs, redundant cryo tanks, redundant CRFs (CryoMed and VIA Freeze) to ensure backup measures are in place.
One of the Center’s signature programs will be its BioBank of off-the-shelf on-demand cell therapy products available for starting material for further manufacture and ethical research. The inventory will consist of products collected from “super donors” with high frequency genetic characteristics sourced from the Gift of Life Marrow Registry.
The Gift of Life Marrow Registry’s mission is to cure blood cancer through cellular therapies. Gift of Life is one of two accredited stem cell donor registries in the United States that facilitates transplants for patients battling blood cancer. Despite remarkable success, up to half of the patients who find a matching donor do not currently receive the transplant they need. The reason is that the time to transplant is too long. Interval processes including donor confirmatory testing, physical examination and health screening, medical clearance, stem cell mobilization and, finally, stem cell harvest all take time to schedule and coordinate. Unfortunately, this extensive process increases the risk that patients will die from their underlying disease while waiting for the cells that can save their lives.
Gift of Life is planning to transform this process by significantly shortening the time to transplant. The first phase of the project was completed in August 2019 with the opening of the first-ever registry-integrated stem cell collection center. Located in-house at Gift of Life headquarters, the new collection center integrates the collection process with registry search operations and donor services, allowing Gift of Life to better control the supply chain. This substantially streamlines operations, improves efficiency and speeds the time to transplant.
Through these new and innovative solutions, more patients with acute diseases requiring rapid transplantation will have access to the treatment that can save their lives. Gift of Life is at the precipice of these medical advances, playing a critical role in the treatment of patients with devastating diseases.