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February 24, 2012 marked the launch of the first bone marrow registry in Nigeria, and only the second such registry in all of Africa. This launch was a milestone step in the country’s efforts to treat cancer patients throughout Africa and the world.
NYSCF sends congratulations to aspiring 2014 Winter Olympian, lawyer, and friend of the organization Seun Adebiyi for his lifesaving work in creating the first bone marrow registry in Nigeria.
The Nigerian bone marrow registry hopes to boost matches between donors and patients, reports Irin News of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
Before cord blood became common in the 1990s, blacks almost never found matches. “In 1990, we only found six matches for African-Americans, and all of them had typical European genes,” Dr. Pablo Rubinstein said.
The launch of a national bone marrow registry in Africa’s most populous nation will help black patients with blood cancers across the continent and worldwide. Tony Kirby reports.
Struggling to find a match after being diagnosed with leukemia, Seun Adebiyi turned to his native Nigeria to do a bone marrow drive, but he was told that he couldn’t hold one because Nigeria didn’t have a registry. He’s now made it his mission to start one.
“There is a huge imbalance between the haves and the have-nots in cancer care, and the dividing line between these two groups runs along race, income, and geography. We have an opportunity now to close that gap, not just for cancer and sickle cell patients in Nigeria, but for black patients with these conditions worldwide.”
“The launch of a national bone marrow registry in Africa’s most populous nation will help black patients with blood cancers across the continent and worldwide.”