Stem cell patientUC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center offers a full range of stem cell transplant services.

They begin with a clinical program of a multidisciplinary team of physicians, nurses, transplant coordinators and others specially trained to work with stem cell donors and patients.

The services also include a fully accredited Apheresis Services Department for stem cell collection, Hematopoietic Progenitor Cell Laboratory for cell storage and preparation and a specially designed Bone Marrow Transplant Unit for safe transplantation care.

The clinical section of the Stem Cell Transplant Program consists of dedicated transplant physicians, nurse practitioners, outpatient transplant nurse coordinators and a multidisciplinary inpatient team including nurses, social workers, pharmacists and nutritionists.

This team of specialists is responsible for developing the most appropriate treatment plans for transplant patients, and preparing them physically and emotionally for the transplant. They follow patients before, during and after the transplant. They also make sure that patients, caregivers, and patients’ families fully understand the transplant procedure and are always available to discuss and meet patients’ needs.

Our clinical section team members have experience performing transplants using stem cells from peripheral blood, bone marrow and cord blood, and work closely with Transfusion Service, Apheresis Services and transplant infectious disease consultants to anticipate problems and provide outstanding care.

Apheresis Services is staffed with experienced physicians and registered nurses trained in apheresis procedures and committed to providing the highest quality patient care.

Apheresis Services provides clinical apheresis support to all UC Davis Medical Center programs, including the Stem Cell Transplant Program, Kidney Transplant Program and lung transplant recipients, utilizing state-of-the-art equipment to provide the following types of services:

  • Peripheral blood stem cell collections, both autologous and allogeneic
  • Therapeutic cell collections
  • Therapeutic apheresis:
    • Therapeutic plasma exchange
    • Red blood cell exchange 
    • Photopheresis therapy to treat graft-versus-host disease and other indications
    • White blood cell and platelet depletions

The department also serves as the only National Marrow Program (NMDP) Apheresis Center in the greater Sacramento area for the collection of donor peripheral blood stem cells and therapeutic cells. These cells are used in transplants for patients all over the world.

The Apheresis Services is registered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and licensed by the California Department of Public Health for producing biological products for treatment of humans. It also shares the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) accreditation with the clinical section of the Stem Cell Transplant Program.

Our Hematopoietic Progenitor Cell Laboratory (HPCL) team has extensive experience in the field of cellular therapy and Good Tissue Practices including:

  • Processing and freezing (cryopreservation) of stem cells derived from peripheral blood and bone marrow
  • Plasma reduction and red-cell depletion of apheresis and bone marrow products when major or minor ABO incompatibilities between donor and patient exist
  • Long-term storage in liquid nitrogen storage tanks and management of stem cells
  • Thawing of cryopreserved stem cells for re-infusion
  • Preparation of donor lymphocyte infusions 
  • Thawing and washing of cord blood
  • Shipping frozen stem cells to other stem cell transplant centers

HPCL utilizes a continuous monitoring and alarm system for 24/7 control of stem cell storage.

HPCL collaborates with the Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) Laboratory at the Institute for Regenerative Cures located at the UC Davis Medical Center and with other stem cell research groups, and participates in innovative research projects leading to development of new treatments utilizing stem cells.

HPCL is accredited by the Foundation Accreditation for Cellular Therapy (FACT) and the College of American Pathologists. It is also registered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and licensed by the California Department of Public Health for producing biological products for treatment of humans. These accreditations and licenses indicate that the laboratory meets or exceeds the standards and regulations required for manufacturing of stem cell therapy products.

The Bone Marrow Transplant Unit (BMTU) has eight single isolation rooms with private bathrooms. Each room has an anteroom where family and staff wash their hands and put on a gown before entering the patient’s room.

The design of the BMTU includes a system that provides positive pressure airflow and a high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration system to minimize presence of potentially infectious germs. Rooms are equipped with a cardiac monitoring system that allows staff to continually monitor patients during chemotherapy and stem cell infusion. Each room also has dedicated medical examining equipment to minimize the chance of transmitting infection to the patient. The BMTU also maintains a negative pressure room for patients with possible airborne infections.

Only authorized personnel and visitors are allowed in the inpatient BMTU.

Nursing care is provided by registered nurses trained and experienced in the management of stem cell transplant patients. Physicians are available 24/7.

The facility (UC Davis Medical Center), where the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit is located, is accredited and certified by the Joint Commission. The certification is a symbol of quality for the healthcare organizations and reflects commitment to meeting certain performance standards.