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Seattle’s Hutch suggests changes to marrow donation

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SEATTLE — The most common method of extracting cells from unrelated donors for patients needing bone-marrow transplants should change in light of new research revealing higher complication rates than an older approach, said the head of clinical research for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Significant new research published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine — the first large, randomized study comparing the two sources of bone-marrow stem cells — showed patients who received transplants from unrelated donors’ blood were significantly more likely to get a complication known as chronic graft-versus-host-disease than those who received cells from donors’ pelvic bones.

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