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New book includes advances in the science and practice of transfusion and transplantation

COLD SPRING HARBOR, N.Y. (Oct. 28, 2008) Transfusion science, a discipline of biomedicine concerned with preventing the transmission of diseases associated with blood transfusion and tissue transplantation, has made significant progress in recent years. The second edition of an informative book in this field, Transfusion Science, was recently released by Scion Publishing (

The first edition of Transfusion Science appeared in 1999. At that time, "[t]he potential risk of prion-related disease transmission was just beginning to be realized," write the authors, Joyce Overfield, Maureen Dawson, and David Hamer, in the Preface to the second edition. Prions are misfolded proteins that have been implicated in a number of transmissible diseases such as "mad cow" disease. "[This risk] has now become recognized as highly significant, along with many other serious hazards of transfusion."

The second edition of Transfusion Science has been extensively updated to cover the latest clinical and scientific applications now possible as a result of advances in molecular biology, including various analytical methods and immunotechniques. The book includes significant background information on the science and practice of immunohematology, including an overview of the immune system, antibodies and antigens, the genetic basis of blood types, and immune- and hematology-related disorders. Sections have been extended to include leukodepletion, pathogen reduction, and hemolytic anemia. Current practice in blood group serology, including the collection and processing of samples, is reviewed. Throughout the text, the latest nomenclature for blood group genes has been adopted.

The book is geared towards students studying courses on transfusion and transplantation, but it will also serve as a useful resource for healthcare professionals involved in transfusion services who are looking to understand recent progress and changes that may impact the safety of these services. To aid student understanding, the new edition has a revised design and layout. Concepts are illustrated with more case studies and color photographs, and a revised series of self-assessment questions and learning outcomes is provided.

In the March, 2008 issue of the British Journal of Biomedical Science, Paul Watson reviewed the new edition of Transfusion Science. "Hurrah!" he wrote. "At last, a new book in transfusion science that describes current laboratory procedures and protocols . . . [Focusing] predominantly on the undergraduate and trainee/specialist practitioner level, it successfully fills the gap in study material between the elementary and the higher echelons of transfusion science, delivering a solid basis of the principles and applied knowledge that will ensure this is included on many university reading lists and the shelves of blood banks."


Contact: Jane Carter
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

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