Mar 12, 2013 11:39 AM by MELISSA CANONE

Increasing African Amercian bone marrow donors

LAFAYETTE, La. - National Association for Black Journalists along with BMLA and Student Leadership Council will be holding a "Be the Match" donor registration drive on March 20, 2013 in the quad at UL Lafayette. Possible donors' ages range between 18 to 44 years old.

Every day thousands of people get diagnosed with life threatening blood cancer diseases. Bone marrow and umbilical cord blood transplants to patients with leukemia, lymphoma and other life-threatening diseases depend on donors. Such cures also rely on having a diverse registry, such as that of Be the Match. On Be the Match registry, 71 percent of donors are Caucasian leaving the remaining 29 percent of donors minorities.

Patients are most likely to match someone who shares their racial or ethnic background. Although, Be the Match Registry has the world's largest diverse registry of over 10 million members, only seven percent are African American. With such a low percentage, African American patients have a smaller chance to find a donor.

Want to save a life someday? "It just takes a simple cheek swab," said Ashley Mudd, Student Leadership President. Mudd registered at a past donor registration drive held on UL campus and will be helping to promote participation next Wednesday, March 20, 2013.



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