Toddler with rare blood type sparks worldwide search for donor

Worldwide Donor Hunt to Help Girl with Rare Blood Type

Zainab Mughal has a rare blood type and needs transfusions to help save her life after being diagnosed with neuroblastoma.

OneBlood says it has found three matches so far, one near London and two in the US, but she will need blood transfusions for the foreseeable future, which means more donors must be found.

The blood is even harder to find because the donors must have blood types "O" or "A" and be 100 percent of Indian, Iranian or Pakistani descent, Forbes said.

Zainab's red blood cells are missing a common antigen known as Indian-B, said Susan Forbes, vice president of marketing and communications for OneBlood.

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.

Both of Zainab's parents and several relatives were tested, but no one was a match.

"The possibility of us finding a compatible donor for this little girl within the right ethnic group we want to screen is less than four percent", Frieda Bright, OneBlood's Reference Laboratory Manager said.

Zainab's parents learned that she has high-risk neuroblastoma and the doctors think the tumor inside the child's belly may have been growing for at least 10 months. "This was the worst thing we were expecting".

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OneBlood is working with the American Rare Donor Programme in an attempt to find donors in the States and overseas, and will co-ordinate all donations anywhere in the world. So, please, donate the blood for my daughter'.

Donors must reach out to OneBlood in advance to ensure the additional compatibility testing is performed.

"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", said Bright.

OneBlood runs blood donor centers across the Southeast.

However Zainab will need more blood than they can provide. Visit www.oneblood.org/zainab for donation information. So far, three matching donors have been located, including a donor that ARDP located in the United Kingdom, near London.

"It's a humble request and I request it from my heart".

"What you're doing to save a human life, my daughter's life, is awesome", says Mughal.

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