More blood donors are required for the University to beat Ohio State University in this year’s Blood Battle, which has one week left to go.

“Michigan is currently a little behind OSU,” said LSA junior Kate Papazian, co-chair of the Alpha Phi Omega Blood Drive. “The OSU blood drive began earlier than Michigan and started really well.”

The Blood Battle is co-sponsored by Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed service fraternity, and the Red Cross.

Compared to last year after the Sept. 11 attacks, the number of blood donors at the end of the first week has been lower this year with an estimate of 1,000 donors so far, Papazian said.

“We have been a little slower this year,” she said. “There were more participants at this time last year and our goal is higher this year.”

For the first time this year, blood donors can also register to give bone marrow, which is being sponsored by University Students Against Cancer.

USAC senior advisor Anita Gupta, an LSA senior, emphasized the need for minority students to be part of the bone marrow registry because of a lack of minority bone marrow.

“The number of minorities on the bone marrow registry is low,” Gupta said. “The numbers of Caucasians are the highest and blacks are the lowest on the registry, while Asians are a little higher than Indians.”

Once registered on the bone marrow registry, an individual is on the registry until age 60, Gupta said.

Gupta explained how the process consists of donating blood and waiting to be matched, which may take as long as 20 years. Once someone’s blood is matched, a physical is performed to further confirm the match of the blood. Next is a one-day procedure to extract bone marrow from the hipbone.

LSA junior and blood donor Heather Ley stressed the importance of donating blood and the convenient location of the blood drive.

“It’s very simple and is also an easy access,” Ley said. “I decided to donate blood to save people’s lives.”

Through the bone marrow drive, Gupta hopes people who decide to be part of the registry are doing it from the heart.

“You are giving a chance for someone to live,” Gupta said.

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