Maimonides Medical Center

About

Gift of Life was founded in 1991 to seek a matching bone marrow donor for leukemia patient Jay Feinberg.  The last donor tested turned out to be a perfect match!  Since then, the charity has evolved into a vehicle for donor recruitment, focused on the international Jewish community. 

In 2005, Gift of Life launched a cord blood donation program (www.jcord.org) that collects from Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY.  The cost of the program is borne by Gift of Life fund-raising.  In order for their cord blood donations to be listed on the NMDP network, obstetricians who collect for Gift of Life must undergo training and regular proficiency testing.

As of March 2013, Gift of Life has suspended collections. Their existing inventory is maintained at the cord blood laboratory of the U. Mass. Memorial Medical Center, which has AABB accreditation.

There are research publications on "HLA polymorphism" among people of Jewish heritage (go to PubMed and search on these keywords), which show that they are more likely to find a donor match in their own ethnic type, and next among other Mediterranean groups.