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The second bone marrow registration drive at MIT in three months attracted 201 minority students, staff and faculty, hoping that one of them would be a match for former MIT student David Li, who is suffering from leukemia. A November drive set a single-day minority drive record with 463 registrants.
Last Friday's drive concentrated on Asians, Pacific Islanders, Africans, Hispanics, Native Americans and persons of mixed ethnicity because of the shortage of donors from those groups. A patient needing a bone marrow transplant is more likely to match with someone from his or her own ethnic group.
Prospective donors registered in the Bush Room from 10am-6pm and gave a small blood sample, which will be tested to determine the person's human leukocyte antigen (HLA). The results will be added to the National Marrow Donors Program international database, which is searched on behalf of patients who need a transplant. About 3,000 persons search for a match each day.
Susan Dacy, a graduate resident tutor at Burton-Conner, acted as liaison for the event.
For additional information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Cammy Lee Leukemia Foundation at 1-800-77-CAMMY.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on March 1, 2000.