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Family of six-year-old Marley makes desperate bone marrow donor appeal

Marley Nicholls

The family of a six-year-old boy from Newport have launched a desperate search for a donor who could save his life.

Marley Nicholls was diagnosed with a rare blood condition earlier this summer.

Marley and his family near their home in Newport

Marley has aplastic anaemia, a condition where bone marrow and stem cells do not produce enough blood cells.

To say it was a shock was an understatement.

The only way I can describe is like someone dropping a grenade.

And then you've got to left to pick up the rest of it.

He's always been happy, healthy, never had a concern, and then this.

– Shaney Truman, Marley's mother

Marley desperately needs a bone marrow transplant.

Nobody in his family is a suitable match. They want many more people to sign up to the bone marrow donors register.

Campaigners say many people aren't aware how easy is it to join the register

Charities warn there's a shortage of potential stem cell or bone marrow donors who could come to the rescue.

9 out of 10 people now give stem cells, which is non invasive, it's an outpatients appointment. So it's so easy to actually donate to people. It's getting people to actually come forward to join the register.

So that's why we call on everybody from 16 to 30 to go to an event, go online, and just register.

– Karen Archer, Anthony Nolan Trust

How do I register as a donor?

Marley currently has weekly hospital appointments, and faces regular blood transfusions
  • 9 out of 10 people donate their stem cells via the bloodstream, in a straightforward process called peripheral blood stem cell collection.
  • 1 in 10 donors will have their stem cells collected via the bone marrow itself, while under general anaesthetic.

Marley's family want to keep day to day life as normal as possible.

They're desperate to find the person who can save his life too.

Together with the Anthony Nolan Trust, they're organising a testing event at the Beaufort Centre in Newport on August 19.

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