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Good samaritan from Germany donates bone marrow cells to save American's life

Date:
September 9, 2013
Source:
Loyola University Health System
Summary:
A young man from Germany donated bone marrow cells to save the life of a complete stranger. The cells helped to cure Murphy of a blood disorder called MDS that otherwise would have been fatal. They recently met for the first time.

Two years ago, a young man from Germany named Manuel Auge donated some of his bone marrow to save the life of a complete stranger, Thomas Murphy of Burr Ridge.

The bone marrow transplant cured Murphy of a blood disorder called MDS that otherwise would have been fatal.

On Sunday, Sept. 8, Auge and Murphy met for the first time, during the 25th Annual Bone Marrow Transplant Celebration of Survivorship at Loyola’s Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center. More than 400 patients, family members and friends attended.

Murphy, who lives in Burr Ridge, had a blood disorder called myelodysplastic syndrome. MDS causes immature blood cells to accumulate in the bone marrow, leading to a shortage of mature blood cells. Mature blood cells that are made also can be defective.

To kill the defective cells, Murphy received high-dose chemotherapy and whole-body radiation. He then received healthy new blood-forming stem cells that came from Auge’s bone marrow.

“You saved my life,” Murphy told Auge moments after they met. “You’re a star.”

Auge, a physics student in Tullmenau, Germany, said, “If you could save the life of a person, I think you should do it. It gives you a good feeling.”

Murphy’s physician, Dr. Patrick Stiff, said, “Mr. Auge is as much a hero as a fireman who pulls a person out of a burning building. Because he donated his cells, Mr. Murphy is alive and healthy today.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Loyola University Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Loyola University Health System. "Good samaritan from Germany donates bone marrow cells to save American's life." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130909152842.htm>.
Loyola University Health System. (2013, September 9). Good samaritan from Germany donates bone marrow cells to save American's life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130909152842.htm
Loyola University Health System. "Good samaritan from Germany donates bone marrow cells to save American's life." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130909152842.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

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