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NHLBI funds research to improve safety of red blood cell transfusions
Date:6/21/2010

iologic mediators in red cell concentrates," Neil Blumberg, M.D., and Richard P. Phipps, Ph.D., University of Rochester, N.Y. This team will investigate red blood cell units' supernatant, including hemoglobin, microparticles, and fats. The team will investigate what changes the supernatant undergoes, what effects it and the stored red blood cells have on patients' platelets, and whether salt-water washing or other methods reverse those effects.

  • "Microparticles in stored RBC as potential mediators in transfusion complications," Wenche Jy, Ph.D., University of Miami, Fla. Jy's team will be the first to explore the role of red blood cell microparticles in transfusion complications including clotting, inflammation, immune suppression, and endothelial tissue disruptions. In addition to conducting lab tests, the team will compare results from transfused patients given either blood stored under standard conditions or blood that was washed to remove microparticles prior to storage.

    "Properties of stored RBCs: Minimization of immune and vascular reactivity," Philip Norris, M.D., Blood Systems Research Institute, San Francisco. Norris' team will focus on the immune effects of stored versus fresh red blood cells. In the lab, they will measure the role of storage time on red cell-endothelial cell adhesion, microparticles, and markers of inflammation. In the clinic, they will compare immune and inflammatory responses in critically ill patients who receive either standard transfusions (no storage time specified) or red blood cells that have been stored for fewer than eight days.

  • "Harmful effects of transfusion of older stored red cells: Iron and inflammation," Steven L. Spitalnik, M.D., Columbia University, New York City Spitalnik's team will determine if hemoglobin iron, which is released after transfusion from damaged red blood cells that have been stored longer, triggers an intense inflammatory response that is particularly harmful
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  • Contact: NHLBI Communications Office
    NHLBI_news@nhlbi.nih.gov
    301-496-4236
    NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
    Source:Eurekalert

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