Only 10% of black South Africans are registered as stem cell donors

“This has devastating consequences,” says Jane Ward, Deputy Director of the SA Bone Marrow Registry (SABMR). “Each year, an estimated 4 000 new cases of blood disorders, such as leukaemia and lymphoma occur in South Africa. For most patients, the best chance of a cure is a bone marrow transplant, also termed a stem cell transplant. “Only about 2.8% of black leukaemia patients referred to the SABMR who require a stem cell transplant and haven’t secured a match within their family are lucky enough to find an unrelated donor match. Sadly, the remainder goes without a transplant and eventually succumb…

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