An artificial blood product developed by researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University is showing great promise in ongoing clinical trials in Stockholm, Sweden - the first time that a blood substitute has ever been used successfully in humans. The Einstein researchers - whose work is supported by $2.2 million in grants from the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Army -- are also fine-tuning a powder version of the substitute that can be reconstituted for use as needed with the simple addition of water.
An October 23rd BBC News article describing the Stockholm trials quoted one enthusiastic researcher, Dr. Pierre LaFolie, chief physician at Karolinska Hospital in Sweden, "If this really works all the way, then mankind will have taken a big step forward."
The leader in developing the blood product is Dr. Seetharama Acharya, professor of medicine and of biophysics and physiology at Einstein. Using blood from donated supplies - whose shelf life for use in transfusions is generally limited to 42 days - Dr. Acharya developed the technology that makes the hemoglobin removed from "old" red blood cells suitable for use in transfusions.
Karen Gardner | AECM
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