Mary G. Vitale

Document Type




Part I of this Note briefly discusses the background of NOTA and several recent scientific and legal developments in the field of bone marrow donation. Part II sets forth the policy and legal arguments for why the continued ban on bone marrow compensation is illogical, outdated, and possibly even unconstitutional. As this Note argues, bone marrow donation differs substantially from the donation of the other organs included in NOTA's phrasing. In light of recent advances in biomedical technology since the passage of the statute in 1984, making the continued inclusion of bone marrow in NOTA's definition arbitrary and unnecessary to achieve the statute's stated purposes. This Note further argues that it is illogical for Congress to ban compensation for bone marrow cell donation but allow compensation for other renewable cells, such as eggs, sperm, and blood. Part III discusses the benefits and potential problems of three possible solutions to deal with remaining ethical issues that would exist if Congress were to legalize bone marrow compensation, and concludes that government regulation and procurement is the optimal solution.



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