Worldwide Search For Donors to Help Girl With Rare Blood Type

A worldwide search is on for blood donors who can help a 2-year-old girl who's battling cancer and has one of the rarest blood types in the world.

To survive, Zainab Mughal will likely require blood transfusions from seven to 10 donors, but getting that number could be difficult, CNN reported.

That's because Zainab has a type of blood found only in people of Pakistani, Indian or Iranian descent, and less than 4 percent of people in those populations may be a match for Zainab, whose family is from Pakistan.

The global search for suitable donors is being aided by OneBlood, a South Florida nonprofit organization.

"We have a zero percent chance of finding compatible blood for this little girl if we look in pretty much any other ethnic group," Frieda Bright, a lab manager with OneBlood, said in a video from the organization, CNN reported.

While the search is global, the ideal outcome would be finding donors in the United States, according to OneBlood.

The group said the search began in September and so far, two compatible donors in the United States and one in the U.K. have been found, CNN reported.

Zainab has a cancer called neuroblastoma and requires treatment with chemotherapy.

"She's going to need to be completely supported by blood donations in order to survive the cancer treatment in order to kill this cancer," Bright said. "The blood's not going to cure her, but the blood's very, very important to support her while she undergoes the treatment for this particular cancer."

MedicalNews
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