FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What does the StemExpress Foundation do?
The StemExpress Foundation was formed in 2015 in part to expedite the speed at which scientists receive rare or diseased blood samples for life-saving research. The StemExpress Foundation advocates for patients and works directly with clinics, hospitals, and researchers to improve patients’ lives and facilitate research.
Do you provide stem cell treatments?
No, the StemExpress Foundation collects blood samples for research purposes only.
What is a StemExpress Stem Cell Collection Center?
It is part of StemExpress LLC, a life-sciences company that accelerates the prevention and cure of diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer by supporting the global biomedical research community. Our Stem Cell Collection Centers welcome community members willing to make a difference by donating blood or bone marrow to science. Blood samples for the StemExpress Foundation can be collected within a StemExpress Stem Cell Collection Center or we can send a phlebotomist to your location.
What happens to the blood samples you collect?
In state-of-the-art facilities, StemExpress performs extensive lab work to test and purify the donated samples so that researchers can use them. Sometimes this requires isolating cells, which is a complex process.
After a sample has been successfully prepared, we ship them to scientists and researchers around the world relying on the cells of the human blood system to find new ways to treat and cure disease. In many cases, speed is of the essence, and we are able to process samples immediately and ship to research institutions, universities, and pharmaceutical companies the same or next day!
Donations are used for research purposes only.
Will you protect my identity?
Yes. We provide researchers donor identification numbers in place of names to keep our donors anonymous. We are dedicated to maintaining confidentiality.
Who can donate?
Almost anyone is eligible! Each rare donation candidate will be evaluated by our medical director or their treating physician to make sure a donation is safe for that donor. The StemExpress Foundation was created to expedite the speed at which researchers receive rare or diseased blood samples, but if you don’t have a disease or condition and wish to donate, you can visit our healthy donor site.
Additional donor requirements include:
- Over 18 years of age
I have gotten a tattoo or piercing in the last twelve months, can I still donate?
Yes. Because our donations are for research purposes only, our restrictions differ from some other donation centers. Please contact us with any questions about your eligibility to donate.
I take medications, can I still donate?
There are many medications that do not prevent you from donating blood. Your safety is our top priority, so before your blood is drawn, you will be asked to provide a complete list of all medications you are currently taking, including vitamins and as-needed medications such as inhalers. If you have questions about your eligibility to donate due to a medical condition, please contact your physician or call us.
I’m starting treatment, does that disqualify me from donating?
I take medications, can I still donate?Before we collect a sample from you, we will do an evaluation which includes reviewing any treatments you are currently receiving and determining your eligibility. Since the blood collections are small, many treatments will not prevent you from donating.
Will I be compensated?
Yes, you will receive a $50 gift card for your time and effort. When you receive your gift card, you are accepting responsibility for that gift card. StemExpress Foundation is not responsible for lost, stolen, or expired gift cards.
When will I be compensated?
If you are coming to one of our Stem Cell Collection Centers, you will receive your gift card at the time of your donation appointment.
If we are scheduling a phlebotomist to come to you, your gift card will be mailed to you as soon as we receive your sample.
How often can I donate?
After your blood donation, you will be eligible to donate blood again in 8 weeks, provided you have been cleared by a physician to donate.
How much blood do you take?
We will draw between 10mL and 100mL (milliliters), so between one and ten tubes. Our medical director or your physician will evaluate you before each donation to determine how much is safe to draw.
Should I fast before my donation?
No, in fact we suggest eating and being well hydrated before you donate.
Will I need to provide a urine sample?
It is not likely, however, if one is requested, a staff member will tell you when you schedule your appointment.