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Sickle Cell Treatment ‘Life-Changing’ for Brockton Brothers

Emmanuel “Manny” Johnson, 21, of Brockton was the first patient to participate in a novel sickle cell clinical trial at the Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center — taking the risk for the sake of his little brother, who has the same disease.

Staying at the hospital for five or six hours every month for a blood transfusion was something that Johnson described as “a regular thing.” He had been receiving transfusions since he was 4-years-old after sickle cell caused him to have two mild strokes.

Now, Johnson hasn’t had a transfusion in nine months, thanks to the clinical trial. The trial wasn’t easy, but one thing motivated Johnson to stay strong — his 7-year-old brother, Aiden, who also has sickle cell disease.



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