The changing activities of a regional marrow donor program

D. Stroncek, R. D. Strand, C. L. Hofkes, Jeffrey Mc Cullough

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: A regional marrow donor program was established in 1982. Following the establishment of the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) in 1987, the activities of this regional program changed. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: To better understand the changes that occurred in the regional marrow donor program, its donor recruitment and marrow collection activities through 1991 were studied retrospectively. Data analyzed included the total number of potential donors, the number and types of potential donors recruited each year, the number of searches performed, the number of samples collected for HLA‐DR typing and mixed lymphocyte culture testing, and the number of transplants in both programs from 1987 through 1991. Statistical analysis was performed by using chi‐square. RESULTS: Initially, only persons who donated platelets by apheresis were enrolled into the program. In 1986, the regional program's first drive to recruit people who were not apheresis donors occurred. The number of such drives increased each year, and in 1991, 12 drives occurred, which resulted in the recruitment of 1313 potential marrow donors. From 1987 to 1991, the number of potential donors in the regional program grew from 3252 to 9146, but the proportion of apheresis donors in the program decreased. In 1987, 91.9 percent of marrow donors at the regional center had been apheresis donors, but in 1991, 41.7 percent had been apheresis donors. The number of marrows donated at the regional center increased from 11 in 1987 to 29 in 1989, but then fell to 24 per year in 1990 and 1991. The decrease in the number of donations at the regional program was due to the rapid growth in the NMDP file of potential marrow donors and the selection of donors whose HLA antigens were more compatible with those of the transplant recipients. In 1989, the regional program contained 4.6 percent of all HLA‐A,B‐typed and 11.2 percent of all HLA‐A,B,DR‐typed potential donors in the NMDP and collected 15.3 percent of all marrows. However, in 1991, the regional program contained 2.0 percent of HLA‐A,B‐ typed donors and 4.1 percent of HLA‐A,B,DR‐typed donors and collected 5.3 percent of marrows. In 1987, 18 percent of the people who donated marrow at the regional center were phenotypically HLA‐A,B,DR identical with the recipient, but in 1991, 92 percent of donor‐recipient pairs were phenotypically HLA‐A,B,DR identical. CONCLUSION: Recruitment activities became an increasingly larger part of the Regional Marrow Donor Program's activities. Increasing the size of the file of potential donors was necessary to maintain a constant number of donations. Persons who were not regular blood donors were an important part of the marrow donor program. 1994 AABB

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-62
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1994


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