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Published on April 16, 2013

Swab Drive to be held April 17 encouraging Bone Marrow Registry

Grand Forks, ND – A bone marrow registry swab drive will be held 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 17 at the University of North Dakota’s Memorial Union.

“Patients with leukemia and other life-threatening diseases depend on finding a donor match to save their life,” explained Nancy Klatt, manager of Altru Cancer Center. Someone is diagnosed with blood cancer every four minutes. Patients need donors who are a close genetic match. Even with a registry of millions, six out of ten patients never receive the lifesaving transplant they need. Donors of all ethnicities are needed.

Registrants must be 18-55 years old, in good health, weigh more than 110 pounds (but not to exceed a BMI of 40) and a commitment to donate peripheral blood stem cells or bone marrow, if a match. Registration simply requires filling out a form and swabbing the inside of the cheek to collect cells for tissue typing. One in about 540 registered donors is called in their lifetime.

For more details on bone marrow donation, visit or contact Erika directly.

About Altru Health System

Altru Health System is a community-owned, integrated system with an acute care hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, more than a dozen clinics in Grand Forks and the region, a large home care network, and a congregate living facility. It employs more than 200 physicians and 3,800 staff and has an annual net operating revenue of more than $400 million.