This is the first man to donate lifesaving stem cells under new partnership at pioneering Sheffield unit

A specialist medical unit in Sheffield is now enabling more people to help save lives all over the world.

By Nik Farah
Tuesday, 21 May, 2019, 15:24
First person to donate lifesaving blood stem cells in new stem cell partnership

The NHS Blood and Transplant Therapeutic Apheresis Services unit, based within Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has become the first unit in the country to provide collection centre services for donors from all three stem cell and bone marrow registries operating in England.

The latest partner is DKMS, a blood cancer charity registering potential blood stem cell donors aged between 17-55.

Stem cells are used to help save the lives of people with blood cancer and blood disorders, and the Sheffield-based TAS unit – which specialises in state-of-the art treatments for rare diseases - is now the only NHS centre in England that provides services for donors from the British Bone Marrow Registry, Anthony Nolan, and now DKMS.

Stem cell and bone marrow donations are collected to support people who have blood disorders and cancers such as leukaemia and require a lifesaving stem cell transplant. The donations made in Sheffield are used to support people both within the UK and across the world.

Prior to establishing the NHSBT service in Sheffield, donors from across the north needed to travel to London, or other locations, to make their donation and give someone else a second chance at life.

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The first person to donate through the partnership, at the TAS unit, was James Moore, aged 26, from Liverpool, who donated to a complete stranger to give them a second chance at life. 

James was inspired to register as a potential blood stem cell donor after hearing about Liverpool boy, Finn McEwen’s search to find his lifesaver, in 2015.

James attended a DKMS donor registration event, took the first steps to become a lifesaver-in-waiting and was on the registry for a few years before being identified as a match for someone in need. He is now urging others to take the first step and register.

Visit dkms.org.uk