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Bone Marrow Transplant Program Expands

November 07, 2006
Lebanon, NH

Norris Cotton Cancer Center's Bone Marrow Transplant Program at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) has become an affiliate of the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP), allowing the program to perform bone marrow transplants in which the donor is not related to the patient.

As an NMDP-affiliate, DHMC will no longer have to send some transplant patients to other facilities for treatment, says Dr. Kenneth Meehan, Director of the Bone Marrow Transplant Program. "The chance of someone having a sibling donor is one in four," explains Meehan. "That's why the unrelated transplant is so important. In a sense, we rescue the patient using someone else's bone marrow or peripheral blood stem cells." Leukemia patients will be the primary recipients of these transplants.

The ability to perform transplants using an unrelated donor is an important step in expanding Dartmouth's Bone Marrow Transplant Program, whose services now rival any major transplant center nationwide.

Bone Marrow Transplant Program facts:

  • 7 hematologists (including three specially-trained bone marrow transplant experts)

  • All major types of bone marrow transplant performed

  • Inpatient and outpatient treatment options

  • Demonstrated excellence as recognized by the Foundation for Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) and the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR)

  • Founded in 1984

In addition, the Bone Marrow Transplant Program is now part of the Blue Distinction Centers for Transplants (BDCT), a nationwide network of transplant centers that meet strict clinical criteria. The BDCT designation makes it easier for a Blue Cross Blue Shield patient to receive an autologous transplant (using the patient's own cells) at Norris Cotton Cancer Center.

Norris Cotton Cancer Center combines advanced cancer research at Dartmouth Medical School with patient-centered cancer care at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, and regional locations in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, and Manchester and Nashua, New Hampshire. It is one of 39 Comprehensive Cancer Centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Learn more about Norris Cotton Cancer Center research, programs, and clinical trials at

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