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Donation of Starting Material for Cell-Based Advanced Therapies: a SaBTO Review

A letter from Professor John Forsythe, Chair of SaBTO, and Professor Marc Turner, Chair of the Cell-Based Advanced Therapies working group.

We would like to bring to your notice a review recently completed by the independent scientific Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs (SaBTO), of the donation of starting material for cell-based advanced therapies.  We believe the findings, and the recommendations, will be of interest.

SaBTO brought together a working group including expertise in infection, cell biology, genetics, prion disease, ethics and donation, with representatives from industry, regulators and research.  The group reviewed the potential risks of infection or genetic abnormality being transmitted by the donor, and how those risks could be mitigated; the challenges of informed consent, in a field where innovation is so rapid; and the implications of traceability, when information may arise years after donation which could have significance for a donor or their family.  The group identified principles to guide and support the development of cell-based advanced therapies while maximising donor and patient safety, and their recommendations are detailed in the report that has just been published.

SaBTO’s report, Donation of Starting Material for Cell-Based Advanced Therapies: a SaBTO Review, is published at

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26 Jan 2020
6:20 am