Cell therapies based on hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) have become the standard of care for a variety of diseases, and the number of patients and disorders being treated using HSCs continues to grow. Effective methods of preservation are critical for the clinical implementation of HSC-based therapies. Preservation permits the completion of safety and quality control testing, transportation to the site of use and coordination of the therapy with patient care regimes. This review discusses advances in the basic science of preservation that will permit us to improve preservation protocols for HSCs and other cell types. Recent advances in preservation technology can also be used to reduce cell losses during cell processing for preservation and improve the safety of HSCs used therapeutically. Finally, the growth of HSC therapy worldwide has created interest in alternative methods of preservation. This review also includes a discussion of different methods of freezing and storage. Improved methods for preserving HSCs will improve not only therapies based on these cells but can improve and speed development of preservation protocols for other cell types used therapeutically.
- Hematopoietic stem cells