Treatment & Options

Stem cells can be collected from the blood, bone marrow or umbilical cord blood for transplantation. Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford offers the full range of options, including:

Allogeneic stem cell transplant
Healthy stem cells are collected from a related or unrelated donor.

An allogeneic related donor’s stem cells genetically match, as close as possible, to the patient. The donor may be a brother, sister or parent. Siblings have a 25% chance of being a match. The degree to which the donor's and patient's match is done by a blood test called human leukocyte antigen (HLA) typing.

An allogeneic unrelated donor is not related to the patient but has similar genetic typing. The National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) makes it possible to find similar matches for patients through a registry of volunteer donors.

Autologous stem cell transplant
Healthy stem cells are collected from the patient's own blood or bone marrow. After treatment, the stem cells are infused into the patient’s blood. The healthy stem cells then find their way to the bone marrow and begin to produce new, healthy cells.

Cord blood stem cell transplant
Stem cells are collected from an umbilical cord immediately following birth from a sibling or unrelated donor. The stem cells can be used soon after or can be stored (frozen) for future use.

Haploidentical stem cell transplant

Healthy stem cells are collected from a parent or a related/unrelated donor, which provides a genetic match that is at least 50% identical to the recipient.

Peripheral stem cell transplant

Stem cells are collected from the peripheral blood. A process called apheresis is used in which blood is removed through an IV catheter, stem cells are selected out by a machine, and the remainder of the blood is returned to the patient. The peripheral blood stem cells are most often used in the autologous setting where patients receive their own stem cells.

Syngeneic stem cell transplant
Stem cells are collected from an identical twin, who has an identical genetic type and is a “perfect” match.