​​Research Program

Biomedical research on cord blood increases the knowledge about hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation, as well as processes for collecting, processing, and storing cord blood. In addition, progenitor cells and other blood components obtained from cord blood are being investigated in the development of new treatments for many diseases. Such stem cell research provides hope for more safe and effective medical therapies in the future. Other biomedical research, which does not relate to HSC, may also be undertaken with cord blood and lead to new discoveries that may improve medical care in the future.

SCBB highly values the contribution of biomedical research to the health and well-being of the community and the advancement of scientific knowledge. SCBB facilitates access to cord blood samples for the purpose of research. This is not necessarily limited to research in the field of haemopoietic stem cells (HSC) transplantation.

Donated cord blood that does not meet the requirements for transplants may be used for biomedical research with the donor’s consent. It may be used in future medical research and development, medical education, training, diagnosis and possibly the treatment of experimental medical conditions. Release of the cord blood and its by-products for research shall be in accordance with the requirements of Human Biomedical Research Act 2015 and its regulations.

All research applications go through operational ethical review by an independent Research Advisory Ethnics Committee (RAEC) to ensure protection of the welfare, rights and safety of cord blood donors and research subjects.

Application Guidelines

Applications are accepted from Project Investigators associated with Research Institutions (RI) that have submitted their declaration of compliance for performing research activities to Ministry of Health, Singapore as per the requirements of Human Biomedical Research Act 2015. 

Investigators shall apply to procure cord blood and/or its derived products for research from SCBB. The completed application should provide all relevant information to allow for assessment by RAEC. A research study application should include the scientific, technical, procedural and ethics information necessary for the RAEC to evaluate both the ethics of the study and its intended future application of cord blood in through biomedical research.

The review process includes the following steps:

  1. The Investigators shall contact SCBB to discuss on the sample requirements (type and quantity) before sending an application to Institutional Review Board's(IRB) approval for the research project. SCBB shall share necessary details on sample procurement process, incuding copy of Informed Consent, if necessary to facilitate the IRB application.
  2. Once Investigator receive IRB approval, an application for the assessment by RAEC shall be submitted.
  3. Upon approval by RAEC, execution of Materials Transfer Agreement agreement between SCBB and Research Institution.

The decision to approve the request depends on the information provided in the application. Investigators must share any new knowledge that changes this information with SCBB through an amendment. Investigators must also inform SCBB of any incidental findings, Severe adverse events and privacy breaches.

For further information on the necessary forms and approval process please contact us at: research@scbb.com.sg

Our RAEC members consist of:


    Dr. Prema Raj – Senior Consultant, Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic/Transplant Surgery surgeon, Singapore General Hospital

    A/Prof Jeyaraj Prema Raj is the Head of Liver Transplant Program in Singapore General Hospital, the Director of Singhealth Transplant and the Deputy Director of the National Transplant Program, Ministry of Health.

    He pioneered hepatobiliary service in Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Singapore General hospital on the 1990’s.

    He helped to start, the Liver Transplant Program (Both Deceased Donor and Living Donor) at SGH in 2004 and the Living Donor Program at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in 2008. He was the Chairman of the Medical Advisory Board in Mount Elizabeth Hospital in 2014, he returned to SGH to start the Singhealth Duke NUS Liver Transplant Centre.

    His primary research interests are tolerance induction of liver transplantation and bioprinting & 3D printing of the liver.​


    Prof Dario Campana – Professor, Department of Pediatrics, National University of Singapore (Member since 2012)

    Dr. Campana obtained his MD and PhD degrees in Italy, where he received his clinical training in hematology. He trained as a scientist at the Royal Free Hospital, University of London, before moving to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, where he was Full Member in the Departments of Oncology and Pathology, and Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Tennessee.

    He is currently Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, and the Mrs. Lee Kong Chian Chair in Advanced Cellular Therapy. He is a recipient of a Singapore Translational Research Investigator award, holds several patents and is the scientific founder of three biotechnology companies. Dr. Campana’s main interest is translational research in oncology, focusing on monitoring response to treatment in leukemia, and on immunotherapy of leukemia, lymphoma and solid tumors.


    Dr. William Hwang – Associate Professor, Medical Director, National Cancer Centre Singapore (Member since 2006)

    A/Prof William Hwang is Medical Director of the National Cancer Centre Singapore. He was previously Head and Senior Consultant of Department of Hematology of the Singapore General Hospital as well as Head of the SingHealth Duke-NUS Blood Cancer Centre (SDBCC). He served as Director of SingHealth Transplants, a multidisciplinary transplant programme in Singapore’s largest healthcare cluster, and Board Member of the Singapore Cord Blood Bank. He is Associate Professor of the Duke-NUS Medical School as well as Clinical Lecturer at the Yong Loo Lin Medical School.

    He has served as President of the World Marrow Donor Association (WMDA) as well as President of the Singapore Society of Hematology (SSH), and was President of the 2016 Asia Pacific Blood and Marrow Transplant Group (APBMT) Congress in Singapore. He is currently chairing the Chapter of Haematologists as well as the workgroup on Biobanking and the Working Committee for Cell, Tissue and Gene Therapy for the Ministry of Health. He sits on the Advisory Committee in Transplantation as well as the Working Committee on Bone Marrow/HSCT services of MOH. He is Advisory Committee member of the Center for International Blood and marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) and Executive Board member of the Asia Pacific Blood and Marrow Transplant Group (APBMT) as well as President of the 2016 APBMT Congress.


    Dr. Edward Manser – Associate Professor, Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology of Singapore (Member since 2006)

    Ed Manser obtained his PhD (Biophysics) at National Institute for Medical Research in London working on the microtubule cytoskeleton under the supervision of Dr Peter M Bayley. He secured a postdoctoral position at Institute of Neurology, London and began looking at aspects of molecular neurobiology. As a Research Fellow at IMCB (1992) he developed an interest in the biochemical pathways downstream of the newly discovered Rho small GTPases and in 1999 was promoted to Principle Investigator, working under the GSK-IMCB Trust. He also headed the IMCB Proteomic facility 2003-2006. Currently, he holds an Associate Professor appointment, and is a Senior Principal Investigator in IMCB


    Dr. G. Owen Schaefer – Research Assistant Professor, Centre for Biomedical Ethics, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore​

    G. Owen Schaefer is a Research Assistant Professor at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics, National University of Singapore. He received his DPhil in Philosophy from Oxford University, and has completed fellowships at the Nationa​l Institutes of Health’s Department of Bioethics and the Oxford Centre for Neuroethics. His primary interests lie on the ethics of developing novel biomedical technologies. He has written on big data, research ethics, the obligation to participate in research, human enhancement, gene testing and editing, assisted reproduction and in vitro meat.


    Dr. Victor Nurcombe – Institute of Medical Biology of Singapore (Member since 2008)

    Victor Nurcombe obtained his PhD in Developmental Neurobiology from the University of Sydney in 1984. He took both CJ Martin and Humboldt Fellowships to initiate his postdoctoral training at the Max-Planck Institute for Biochemistry in Munich, and then worked in Oxford, Paris and New York, before returning to Australia in 1990 first to the Walter & Eliza Hall Institutel and hence to the University of Melbourne in 1992 as a Senior Lecturer. In 1998, he became a Reader and Associate Professor at the University of Queensland as Head of Developmental Biology, before being headhunted to the IMCB in Singapore as a Principal Investigator in Stem Cell Biology in 2003. In 2008, he became Senior Principal Investigator within the IMB. He is also Adjunct Professor at the LKC School of Medicine, Imperial College London-NTU, Singapore, as well as the University of Lille in France.