Marrow Donation Can Only Be From a Relative

False! Some patients are able to donate their own stem cells, a process called an autologous transplant. However, many patients, depending on their age, cancer type and overall health, require an allogeneic transplant for best results. (“allo” means other.) A patient’s brother or sister has a 30% chance of matching his or her siblings HLA type. When no siblings match, the patient will need a match from an unrelated donor. Minorities and people of mixed race have a harder time finding a match in the registry because fewer are represented. Because ethnic makeup determines who would be the best match, the Registry would benefit greatly from an increase in racial diversity.

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