Can Bone Marrow Transplant Changes DNA?

What is bone marrow transplantation? 

Bone marrow transplantation is a process when the diseased or damaged bone marrow replaces healthy blood-producing bone marrow.

It is a unique therapy for the cancer patient in that normal healthy cells are taken from the stem cells and transplanted into the patient.

Bone marrow transplantation gives healthy cells to the patient.

Bone marrow produces stem cells. These stem cells eventually develop into blood cells.

Bone marrow transplantation
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Table of Contents

Sources of bone marrow stem cells 

It is a spongy–like substance found inside our large bones, like the femur, hips, and ribs.

Peripheral Blood Stem Cells

 It is collected by apheresis, a process in which the donor is connected to a particular cell separation machine via a needle inserted in the vein. Blood is taken from the vein and is circulated through the device, which removes the stem cells from the patient’s body and returns the remaining blood and plasma to the donor through another needle inserted into other arms.

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Classification of bone marrow transplant

Autologous bone marrow transplant: Stem cells are taken from another person’s body. The donor shares the genetic type as the patient.

  • Other donors for allogeneic bone marrow transplant include :
  • Parent
  • Identical twins
  • Unrelated bone marrow transplant.

Transplantation process

  • The first step is to collect stem cells from the patient or donor. This is known as a harvest.
  • Intense therapy is needed to treat the malignancy in the bone marrow for new cells to grow.
  • This therapy is called ablative or myeloablative.
  • After the chemotherapy and radiation are administered, the marrow transplant is given through the central venous catheter into the bloodstream.
  • It is not a surgical procedure to replace bone marrow, but it is like a blood transfusion.
  • The stem cells find their way and start the reproduction of new healthy cells.
  • During this time, patients will need constant medical and nursing support. 

How to prepare?

Before bone marrow transplantation, the doctor will decide on the best type of procedure and find a suitable donor.

If he can use the person’s cells, they will collect the cells first and store them safely in the freezer until transplanted.

The person will then have other treatments, which may include chemotherapy, radiation, or both.

This procedure is usually done to destroy the bone marrow cells as well as the cancer cells. Chemotherapy and radiation also reduce the immune system and prevent the plant from rejecting.

When preparing for a transplant, the person needs to stay in the hospital for 1-2 weeks.

A drug will be given through the tube that destroys any abnormal stem cells and weakens the immune system not to allow healthy transplanted cells to come.


Your doctor will do a blood test to see if new cells grow in your new bone marrow.

If a person’s white blood cells begin to grow and the body begins to make its blood, we can say that the transplantation is successful.

It depends on how long it takes for the body to recover

  • How good is the immune system
  • How the body adapts to new, healthy cells
  • Many other factors affect recovery,

Underlying medical conditions

  • Use of chemotherapy, radiation or both Where transplanted
  • The medical team monitors the person’s recovery for one year. People think that the effects of transplantation last a lifetime.

Risk factors

Bone marrow transplantation is a major medical procedure. There may be a low risk of some complications during and after it.

The likelihood of complications developing depends on a variety of factors,

  • Age of the person
  • Their overall health
  • Type of transplant
  • The reason for their transplantation

Below are some common complications that make people experience bone marrow transplants

  • Infection
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Mucositis, which includes inflammation and pain in the throat, mouth, and abdomen
  • Lum failure, in which transplanted cells do not produce new blood cells
  • Anemia
  • Early menopause
  • Infertility
  • Cataracts
  • Limb damage
  • Graft-versus-host disease, in which donor cells attack a person’s body
  • Bleeding in the brain, lungs, or other organs
  • Some people die as a result of bone marrow transplants.

A person receiving a bone marrow transplant may experience reactions that may follow any medical procedure,

  • Shortness of breath
  • Blood pressure
  • Headache
  • Pain
  • Fever
  • Feeling cold


Can bone marrow transplant changes DNA?

Bone marrow transplants are an effective treatment for certain conditions

 Which makes it difficult for our bone marrow to produce blood cells.

When someone gets a bone marrow transplant, the new marrow has a different DNA than the rest of your body. However, the rest of the body does not change the DNA; only the marrow is different.

So yes, it now has a different DNA in the transplanted marrow in your body, but nowhere else is your original DNA. Because DNA is not “changed.”

This can happen on specific genetic tests, which often use a blood sample to test your DNA; if you have had a bone marrow transplant, find out if your doctors are aware of the transplant.

 Even a relatively recent blood transfusion can interfere with the genetic testing of your blood

Does bone marrow transplant hurt?

No, it doesn’t hurt at all. Getting a bone marrow transplant is the same as getting blood units.

Now, many use peripheral stem cell transplantation, which involves a procedure called blood apheresis. The first donor receives injections of a granulocyte-colony stimulant that collects stem cells from the bone marrow into the blood. 

Donor blood is passed through a device that separates the stem cell and returns the rest to the body. You are not harmed more than this.


Successful bone marrow transplantation depends primarily on how the donor and recipient are genetically matched. Sometimes, unrelated donors don’t match the same.

The status of your invasion is monitored regularly and is usually completed between 10 and 28 days after the initial transplant. The first sign of carving is a sign of increasing white blood cells. This proves that the transplant starts making new blood cells.

The typical recovery time for a bone marrow transplant takes time. However, it takes about a year for you to recover completely.

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