Virginia-based band GWAR signs up thousands for bone marrow donor registry

(AP) -- A band based in Virginia has signed up thousands of people as potential bone marrow donors after a member was diagnosed with cancer.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports GWAR partnered with an organization called Love Hope Strength earlier this year after guitarist Michael Derks was diagnosed with myelofibrosis, a rare form of bone marrow cancer.

Love Hope Strength's national tour manager Rob Rushing said, "They're the Number 1 band we've had on our virtual drive." Rushing says GWAR has added about 3,000 people to the registry so far.

At GWAR concerts, fans are being asked to swab their cheeks so their DNA can be entered into the national database.

If they later match with someone in need of a donation, they'll receive a phone call asking if they want to proceed.