Good isn't good enough
Ever wondered how a sperm bank selects donors? At California Cryobank, our stringent Donor Qualification Process (including genetic and infectious disease screening ) allow less than 1% of all applicants to make it into our program.
Why are we so picky? Because being a CCB donor means being the best. While some banks charge extra for their more "desirable" donors, we consider all our donors to be "premium" level, each possessing excellent health histories and unique individual interests and talents.
Selection + Quality = finding your ideal donor!
THE SCREENING PROCESS
Because some sperm will be lost during processing and not all sperm will survive the freezing and thawing process, semen samples must be evaluated to determine whether or not they will be useful. Many potential donors present with less-than-adequate specimens.
If the potential donor's semen sample meets our count and motility standards, it takes another 3+ months for the applicant to become a fully qualified donor. During this period, a PD must leave several semen and blood samples for laboratory testing and genetic screening.
Infectious disease testing is done during the initial screening and repeated approximately every 3 months thereafter. Testing includes:
- CMV Total antibody
(if reactive, additional tests are performed to exclude an active infection)
- Hepatitis B Virus surface antigen
- Hepatitis B Virus core antibody
- Hepatitis C Virus antibody
- Hepatitis C Virus NAT (Nucleic Acid Test)
- HTLV I/II antibody
- HIV1/HIV2 antibody
- HIV 1 NAT (Nucleic Acid Test)
- Syphilis Serology
In response to the recent concerns over risk of Zika virus transmission, California Cryobank is currently following the AABB's guidelines for blood banks and is in contact with the CDC, FDA, and AATB awaiting further recommendations that are expected very soon.
Current AABB recommendations include donor deferral for one month following return to USA from countries at risk (see list below), or has had sexual contact with a person who has traveled to an at risk country within the past month. A 28 day deferral from donating for a presumed exposed individual is considered a conservative window (ample time) to mitigate transmission through viral shedding. For a donor displaying symptoms suggestive of an acute Zika-like illness, specimens collected for two weeks prior to onset of symptoms should be discarded.
California Cryobank is amending our current donor travel questionnaire to include regions that are experiencing Zika epidemics, or those that are likely to experience such epidemics in the near future. These regions include: Mexico, Central America, South America, Caribbean Islands, French Polynesia, Samoa, Cape Verde Islands. We will also be reviewing travel histories of all active donors for the past year to assess possible exposure.
If you have further concerns, please contact our Client Services Department at 866-927-9622.
One of our Genetic Counselors conducts a genetic interview which includes a review of the potential donor's extended profile. The extended donor profile includes information about the health of the donor, his siblings, his parents, his grandparents, his aunts, his uncles, and his cousins. The family medical history is carefully evaluated for any birth defects or known genetic conditions.
A donor applicant is disqualified from participation in the donor program if there is a family history which indicates that his offspring may be at increased risk for a birth defect or known genetic condition.
Once the genetic counselor, donor manager, laboratory manager, and the medical director are satisfied that the potential donor is a good candidate for our donor program, he becomes a fully qualified donor.