National Marrow Donor Program - April 2008 Charity-of-the-Month

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National Marrow Donor Program
3001 Broadway Street N.E.
Suite 100
Minneapolis, MN 55413-1753

tel: 1-800-MARROW-2 (1-800-627-7692)
tel: 1-612-627-5800

The Need for Donors
On any given day, more than 6,000 men, women and children are searching the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) Registry for a life-saving donor like you. These patients have leukemia, lymphoma and other life-threatening diseases that can be treated by a bone marrow or cord blood transplant. For many of these patients, a transplant may be the best and only hope of a cure.
We work to provide hope and deliver a cure to all patients in need. With your support, more patients can access the treatment they so desperately need.

Finding a match: The basics
For a successful transplant, the tissue type of a bone marrow donor or a cord blood unit needs to match the patient's as closely as possible. Special testing determines whether a patient and bone marrow donor or cord blood unit are a good match. The closer the match, the better for the patient.

Race and ethnicity matter in tissue matches
Because tissue types are inherited, patients are more likely to match someone from their own race or ethnicity. Adding more donors and cord blood units from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds to the NMDP Registry increases the likelihood that all patients will find the match they need.

Your heritage can make all the difference. If you are from one of the following communities, you are urgently needed as a bone marrow donor or cord blood donor:
* Black and African American
* American Indian and Alaska Native
* Asian
* Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander
* Hispanic and Latino
* Multiple race

A match for every patient. Hope for every family.
We have a Registry of millions. But we still do not have matched bone marrow donors or cord blood units for all patients, especially those from racially and ethnically diverse communities.

We need more new donors to join the Registry and expectant parents to donate cord blood. With your help, more people will receive a transplant. And more families will have a future filled with hope.

Be part of our life-saving work:
* Join the Registry - Become a bone marrow donor.
* Make a financial contribution - Cover tissue typing costs and support patients.
* Get involved - Sign up for updates on how you can help us change lives.
* Engage your organization - Your partnership with the NMDP provides an opportunity to engage in a program that saves lives.
* Recruit donors - Individuals and families can make a difference.
* Donate umbilical cord blood at your baby's birth.

Help in more ways - Find other easy ways to contribute.

Connecting Patients with Donors
Bone marrow and cord blood transplants are a life-changing treatment for people with leukemia, lymphoma and many other diseases. For many patients, a transplant may be the best - and only - hope for a cure.

When patients learn they need a transplant, they turn first to their families to find a donor. But 70% of those patients won't find a suitable match in their family. They depend on bone marrow or cord blood donors like you.

The world's largest registry of donors
The National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) makes sure every patient has the best possible chance to receive the transplant he or she needs.

To do so, we not only recruit committed donors, we spearhead the entire donor search and matching process. Through our

Registry, searching patients have access to:
* 7 million potential bone marrow donors
* 70,000 cord blood units donated by parents after their baby's birth
* 4 million additional donors and cord blood units, thanks to our partnerships around the world

And we are working to expand the size and diversity of our Registry every day. Families, civic, community, corporate and faith-based organizations partner with us to raise awareness about the need for donors, especially from diverse racial and ethnic communities.

Thanks to these efforts, the likelihood of finding a match has improved for patients from all racial and ethnic groups.

30,000 transplants
Since 1987, we have helped more than 30,000 patients receive the bone marrow or cord blood transplants they need. And we help more patients every day: on average, more than 300 patients receive a transplant through us each month.
But even with a Registry of millions, there are many patients waiting and hoping for a a match.

That is why we need you. With your support, more patients can access the treatment they so desperately need.

Do it because you care. Do it because you can.


More Ways You Can Help
Help more patients receive the life-saving transplant they need by supporting the work of the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP). Here are some easy ways to make a difference in the lives of others.

Workplace giving

Give through United Way
Participating in a workplace United Way campaign is an easy way to support the NMDP. If your workplace holds a United Way campaign, simply designate The Marrow Foundation® when you make your gift to the United Way.

Participate in Combined Federal Campaign
For employees in the federal civilian, postal or military work force, the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) offers an easy way to support our work. Federal employees can pledge contributions during the campaign season, September 1 to December 15, to support the NMDP. Simply designate The Marrow Foundation (#10579) when you make a gift during the campaign season.

Online giving

Contribute through this our site
Give with a credit card through our secure online donation form.

Share a portion of your eBay sales through MissionFish
When you list items for sale on eBay, contribute a percentage of the final value to support our work. Select our fund raising partner, The Marrow Foundation, to receive your contribution. To learn more, see

Contribute through the American Express donation site
American Express Cardmembers can support our work by contributing through the online GivingExpressSM Program. Make your contribution to The Marrow Foundation at

Donate frequent flyer miles
Donate Northwest Airlines WorldPerks miles to the NMDP to fly transplant recipients and their caregivers to the transplant centers treating them. Your miles can make a real difference to families burdened by the cost of transplant. Learn how.

When You're Contacted as a Possible Match
Once you are listed on the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) Registry, we will contact you if you are identified as a possible match for a patient.

At this point in the bone marrow donation process:
* The patient's doctor requests additional testing to determine if you are the best donor for the patient. You may be asked to provide a blood sample for testing or a stored sample may be used.
* You are likely one of several people being tested. The chance you will be selected is about 1 in 12. For more information, see How Donors Are Selected.
* We will make sure you are still interested in participating and provide information and answers to your questions.
* We will ask questions about your health history to be sure it is safe for you to donate bone marrow or blood cells. For more information, see Medical Guidelines: When You Match a Patient.

Additional testing - What to expect
Participating in additional testing is your decision. There is no cost to you - the NMDP or the patient's insurance covers any medical expenses. If you are unwilling or unable to participate, please tell us as soon as you decide.
It can take one week to 60 days for the patient's doctor to get the testing results and select a donor. The patient's condition also affects the process timing. We will keep you posted on the doctor's decision. If you are the most suitable donor, you may be asked to donate right away or wait until the patient is ready. Doctors base the timing on what is best for the patient and you. To learn more, see when you're asked to donate for a patient.

How Donors Are Selected
From the day you join the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) Registry you're told, "You could be a match."
But what exactly is being matched?
The short answer: HLA. Human leukocyte antigens (HLA) are proteins - or markers - found on most cells in your body. Your immune system uses these markers to recognize which cells belong in your body and which do not. A close HLA match between patient and donor is the most important factor in selecting the best bone marrow donor for a patient.

A close match
There are many HLA markers, but matching only a small number of them is critical to a successful transplant.
We test most donors for 6 HLA markers when they join the NMDP Registry. By testing for a basic level of HLA markers, we keep tissue typing costs low - we want to be able to add as many donors as possible to help all searching patients find a match.

Next step
A patient's doctor usually tries to select several potential donors who appear to match the patient at a basic level. The doctor then asks for additional testing to find a donor who matches the patient at a detailed level. (For more information, see When You're Contacted as a Possible Match.)

Other factors
If more than one potential donor is a good HLA match for a patient, doctors will also consider other factors, such as the donor's age, gender and size.

Understanding Your Disease & Treatment Options
If you or someone you love is diagnosed with leukemia, an immune disease or other genetic disorder, learning more about your disease and treatment options will help you make informed decisions about your care.
* Learning More about Your Disease
* Understanding Your Treatment Options

Planning your treatment
Taking part in the development of your treatment plan with your doctor will help ensure you receive the best care possible. Talk to your doctor. Every question you have is important.
* Working with Your Health Care Team
* Discussing Options with Your Doctor

Contact Us
You can contact us through one of our online forms on our site, or you can reach us using the information below.

The Marrow Foundation

The Marrow Foundation® has secured resources to help patients overcome financial barriers to life-saving transplants since 1991.

Funding our life-saving work
As the official 501(c)3 charitable organization of the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP), The Marrow Foundation provides funding to the NMDP through generous contributions from corporations, foundations, organizations and people like you.

We use your financial support to:
* Provide patient assistance to help patients through their transplant journey
* Add people to the donor Registry
* Conduct research to help patients live longer, healthier lives

You are part of our mission to save lives. Your contribution enables us to help those that need it the most - the patients.

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National Marrow Donor Program
3001 Broadway Street N.E.
Suite 100
Minneapolis, MN 55413-1753

tel: 1-800-MARROW-2 (1-800-627-7692)
tel: 1-612-627-5800


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