‘Cord Blood Connect’ Registration Open

Fifteen organizations collaborating again this year on CBA-hosted congress

Registration is open for Cord Blood Connect, the international congress that embraces all components of the cord blood community – public and family banking, clinical and laboratory investigations, manufacturing, administration, training and education.

Convening Sept. 10-12 in Miami Beach, the congress again will have multiple tracks for clinical and translational science and investigations, as well as education and training for cord blood bank administrative, technical and support personnel. CBA individual members can register for $410, saving $200 compared to the non-member rate. Or, those who join as new members while registering pay first-year dues of only $50.


Collaborating with CBA in the development of the congress are 14 nonprofit organizations within, or closely allied to, cord blood banking:

  • AABB
  • American Association of Tissue Banks
  • American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy
  • Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research
  • Eurocord
  • European School of Haematology
  • Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy
  • International Society for Cellular Therapy
  • National Marrow Donor Program / Be The Match
  • Parent’s Guide to Cord Blood Foundation
  • Perinatal Stem Cell Society
  • Regenerative Medicine Foundation
  • Save the Cord Foundation
  • World Marrow Donor Association / NetCord

On Sept. 9, the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) will host a cord blood bank accreditation workshop and an inspector training workshop. This requires a separate registration.

Oceanside Venue

Cord Blood Connect will convene at Loews Miami Beach Hotel, located oceanside in the heart of the fabled South Beach neighborhood with its trendy restaurants, shops and attractions.

September provides some of the best “off season” savings, and special rates have been negotiated to make conference housing affordable for teams of cord blood bank personnel. Learning together as a team will be the spirit of the conference.

Preliminary Agenda

Two planning committees are at work on the agenda.  A scientific team, led by Ngaire Elwood, PhD, director of BMDI Cord Blood Bank in Melbourne, Australia, is developing sessions on:

  • Cord blood transplantation – The latest advances and game changers for the future
  • Regenerative medicine and immunotherapies
  • Gene therapy – with emphasis on advances for sickle cell disease
  • International approaches to transplantation
  • Birthing tissues as a platform for cellular therapies:  the science
  • Novel uses of perinatal tissue allographs
  • Status of mesenchymal cell manufacturing and clinical trials

A technology and education team, led by Heather Brown, vice president for scientific and medical affairs at California Cryobank in San Francisco, is developing education and training sessions on:

  • Birthing tissues as a platform for cellular therapies:  the technology and manufacturing
  • What cord blood banks can learn from tissue banks (and vice versa)
  • Perceptions about banking from obstetrician and pediatric specialists
  • Success of registries that are expanding donor availability and access
  • Release criteria, including testing, potency and standardization
  • Collection and qualification of cord blood and birthing tissues from diverse populations and for rare diseases

Other sessions related to banking regulations and policies will include:

  • Evolving laws and regulations governing banking and therapies, including ethical issues
  • Legal issues concerning ownership of banked units and tissues
Other Features

Add to the above a poster session, presentations of best abstracts, commercial exhibits, and ample opportunities for peers to network and connect. “The objective is a gathering that invigorates and inspires the cord blood community,” said CBA President Joanne Kurtzberg, MD. “The congress is structured not only to meet everyone’s professional needs and interests, but also to encourage networking because often the most valuable information can come from discussions with peers outside of the formal presentations.”

“We want each of our collaborating organizations to view the congress as their own for workshops, committee meetings and networking,” added CBA Vice President Colleen Delaney, MD, MSc. “The conference name, Cord Blood Connect, denotes the coming together of the nonprofit organizations, as well as the multi-national dimensions of the field. Connect also references the linkage between investigators and banking service providers, and the mutual interests of public and family banks.”

Last year’s inaugural congress was acclaimed a complete success.

Members Discount

CBA individual members pay only $410, saving $200 compared to the non-member registration fee.

If you aren’t a CBA individual member, you can apply for membership while registering. The usual $99 annual membership dues has been reduced to $50 for first-time members who complete an application while registering online for Cord Blood Connect.

Details about the international congress are being updated regularly through September at the registration website for the congress at www.cord-blood-connect.org.