Become a Donor

To register as a donor: You have to be between the ages of 18 and 50, and in good general health. You will fill out a short form with your contact information and a brief medical history. You will give us a tissue sample (a few swabs from the inside of your cheek). You’re done! We will analyze your sample, determine your tissue type, and file this away with your contact information into our computer. This information will remain there till you reach the age of 55. You are now a registered ABMDR donor.

We ask that you kindly notify us and update your contact information when you move.

Registered donors: Congratulations! Now that you are a registered donor, the Armenian Bone Marrow Donor Registry will contact you once you are identified as a possible match for a patient.

Potential match: If your tissue type matches that of a patient, you are considered a potential match. The patient’s doctor may request additional testing to determine if you are the best donor for the patient — especially when there are more than one matches found for a single patient. You may be asked to provide a blood sample for re-testing your tissue type, and to make sure that you do not have any conditions that might endanger the patient.

Actual Donor: If these tests reveal that you are in good health and still a good match for the patient, we will review the medical guidelines with you, answer all your questions, and only then, and still with your consent, will we proceed to the next step, the actual harvesting of your stem cells. For this, you will undergo a thorough medical checkup, you will be given an injection of Filgrastim, a growth hormone (to stimulate the production of bone marrow stem cells, and have more of them leave the bone marrow and circulate in blood), for four days. On the day of the procedure, you will be hooked up to two IVs, one through each arm. Blood will be taken from one arm, processed through an apheresis machine, which will separate the extra stem cells circulating in your blood, and return the rest of your blood — minus your extra stem cells — back to you. The procedure of “harvesting” your stem cells takes three to four hours, during which time you will remain fully alert and awake. You will NOT be anesthetized, there will be NO surgery, NO invasive procedure, and NO harm or danger to you. At the end of the procedure, you will get up and walk away. Your stem cells will be replenished within a week or ten days at the most. The harvested stem cells will be packed and sent to the patient.

You now live with the knowledge and deep satisfaction of having saved someone’s life. What a blessing!!! Call our Los Angeles office at (323) 663-3609 at, or our Yerevan office at (374 10) 20 83 11 at, or click here and complete the contact information form.

Upcoming Donor Drives For upcoming donor drives, please click here

Eligibility guidelines

Condition Eligibility
Age 18-50
AIDS If you have been tested positive for HIV or have AIDS, you cannot become a marrow donor.
Allergies Common allergies (medication, environment, animals, etc.) are acceptable.
Arthritis Mild to moderate osteoarthritis and degenerative arthritis are acceptable.  All other forms of arthritis are not acceptable.
Asthma Chronic asthma is not acceptable.  Exercise induced asthma is acceptable.
Autoimmune Diseases Individuals with multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and some types of thyroid disorders cannot join the registry.
Blood pressure Uncontrolled elevated blood pressure is not acceptable.
Cancer All forms of cancer are not acceptable.
Cold/flu Recent infections such as colds and flu will not prevent you from registering to become a donor.
Depression Stable controlled depression is acceptable.
Diabetes Insulin-dependent diabetes is not acceptable.  Diabetes controlled by diet is acceptable.
Epilepsy Epilepsy controlled by medication is acceptable if the donor has not had more than one seizure in the past year.
Heart Disease Prior heart conditions such as heart attack and bypass surgery are not acceptable.  Irregular heart beat and mitral valve prolapsed that do not require medication or other restrictions are acceptable.
Lyme Disease Chronic Lyme disease is not acceptable.
Obesity Body mass index (BMI) will be used to determine suitability of the donor.
Organ Tissue Transplant Individuals who have had either organ (heart, kidney, bone or other organs) or tissue transplant cannot become donors.
Pregnancy Women who are pregnant, can donate sample to be tissue typed, however if they are called as a potential donor, they will be deferred until 6 months after giving birth.