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Blood and Bone Marrow Transplant Donors

Blood and bone marrow transplants donors are important and crucially needed. Since the immune system’s primary role is to kill foreign substances that enter your body, it’s essential to match all BMT donors as close as possible. If transplanted marrow doesn’t match closely enough, the transplant will not be as successful and potentially have debilitating side effects.

Millions of genetic combinations exist, making it very difficult to match recipients to donors. The best chance of a complete match, within the family, is with a sibling with the same parents as the recipient.

Unrelated donors can also be a very viable match, which is why it is critically important to increase the pool of blood and bone marrow transplant donors, especially in minorities. The more donors available in the registry, the more closely potential matches can be made. The largest unrelated donor registry in the U.S. is Be the Match, formerly known as National Marrow Donor Program.