The Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Act of 2005 (Stem Cell Act 2005) was passed by Congress and signed by President Bush in December 2005 as Public Law 109-129. In October 2010, President Obama signed the Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Reauthorization Act of 2010, Public Law 111-264 (Stem Cell Act 2010). On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Reauthorization Act of 2015, Public Law 114-104. The Stem Cell Acts of 2005, 2010 and 2015 are managed by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The Stem Cell Acts include the:
The law also requires an Advisory Council on Blood Stem Cell Transplantation to make recommendations on issues about the Program to the Secretary of the HHS.
A bone marrow transplant (also called a BMT) or umbilical cord blood transplant may be able to save the lives of some people who have a blood cancer (such as leukemia or lymphoma) or an inherited metabolic or immune system disorder. A bone marrow or cord blood transplant replaces a patient's diseased blood-forming cells with healthy ones.
On this page:
The Program builds on the work of the National Bone Marrow Donor Registry, which was established in 1987. The Program was established in September 2006 with broader objectives and continues to help patients have a successful bone marrow or cord blood transplant.
There are four components of the Program.
The four Program components work together for the overall goals of:
To accomplish these overall goals, each of the four components has its own contract with specific goals and requirements. The Program assesses the goals and requirements of each component annually. Requirements common to all Program components are:
For an overview of additional requirements for each Program component, see:
The Stem Cell Acts of 2005, 2010 and 2015 also require the Secretary of the HHS to contract with qualified public cord blood banks to obtain at least 150,000 new cord blood units. These cord blood units must meet specific criteria and are available for transplantation through the Program.
Sometimes cord blood units are not suitable for transplant (such as when the number of blood-forming cells is too few). Unsuitable cord blood units are either made available for research or they are discarded.
For an overview of the NCBI requirements, see National Cord Blood Inventory Contract Summary.
In 1986, United States Congressman C.W. Bill Young was instrumental in creating a national registry for bone marrow donors. That program has expanded to include facilitation of unrelated donor transplants and BMT research. It is now called the C.W. Bill Young Cell Transplantation Program. Congressman Young passed away in October 2013.