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This is what hope looks like.

It may not look like much to you....until you learn who gave it, how it was given, and who received it.

You've no doubt heard of stem cells being used to treat a variety of diseases, especially cancer. These days, most stem cells are obtained through lines placed in the veins of our donors, then run through a special machine which selects the stem cells and returns the remaining blood to the donor. We can also use umbilical stem cells (obtained from the placenta after the baby has been born). And then we also occasionally use cells obtained from the donor's bone marrow while he is under general anesthesia.

The photo you see above was taken during an infusion of stem cells. That precious drop of red stuff you see is teeming with stem cells. The little bag you see contained more than 1,000,000 stem cells... cells which, in this case, are filled with love. Because this is what one family is relying on... along with their strong faith in God... to bring about a cure. One man sharing hope with another through the gift of bone marrow which is packed with cells to help his brother regain his health.

Mom, wife, recipient, and donor
This family is typical of those helped by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). And research funded by the LLS is used to develop cures for blood cancers as well as treatments to improved the quality of life of patients such as these. I've spoken about the work of the LLS in a couple of posts recently. (See here and here.) They've got a fundraiser going on for just a few more weeks. I'd like to ask you to consider donating to support the great work they do. Please click here and donate. I would appreciate it, and so would the folks pictured here.

PS - if you're a stem cell transplant survivor, here are a site you might want to investigate: Bone Marrow & Stem Cell Transplant Survivors Club (on Facebook). And know that I'm wishing you good health and a great life!