South Florida girl in need of rare blood to fight cancer

Maricruz Casares
Diciembre 4, 2018

A worldwide search is on to find blood donors with a rare genetic variation to help save a 2-year-old South Florida girl battling cancer.

The two-year-old from South Florida, Zainab suffers from Neuroblastoma, a cancer that grows from immature nerve cells surrounding the adrenal glands that affects children of five years of age or under.

Donors must be exclusively Pakistani, Indian, or Iranian descent, which means the donor's birth parents must both be 100 percent Pakistani, Indian or Iranian and the blood type must be "O" or "A".

OneBlood says that Zainab's blood is extremely rare because she is missing a common antigen that most people carry in their red blood cells. Donors also must coordinate with OneBlood, so their sample is tested for compatibility.

Her dad told OneBlood that he, his wife and most of their families donated, but were not a match.

For the said goal, a global quest is underway to find a rare blood type.

Mughal 2 is missing a common Indian-B antigen meaning she’ll need a rare donor who is also missing that antigen
Mughal 2 is missing a common Indian-B antigen meaning she’ll need a rare donor who is also missing that antigen

Dr Bright further explained, "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".

First diagnosed with high-risk Neuroblastoma a few weeks ago, family and doctors believe it was growing in Zainab's stomach for at least 10 months.

"We were all crying", Raheel Mughal, the girl's father, said, according to the Miami Herald.

Neuroblastoma most often occurs in infants and young children, and accounts for about 6 percent of all cancers in children. "This was the worst thing we were expecting".

Florida-based OneBlood, a nonprofit blood center, has now been conducting an worldwide search to find compatible blood donors. Three matching donors have been located, including a donor from the United Kingdom. If Zainab gets a blood donation from someone who has the antigen, her body will reject it.

'We need to find more.It's a humble request, and I request it from my heart, ' said Raheel Mughal said in the video. "My daughter's life very much depends on the blood".

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