Still very interesting to see that we are making progress towards creating fully artificial, non-type specific blood that anyone can use in a time of need.
The artificial blood can be stored at normal temperatures for more than a year.
Any idea how this stuff is manufactured? Can it be produced cheaply enough to potentially replace the entire blood donation system?
I didn't know that the shelf life of blood is that short. Does this mean it is possible that some portion of blood collected from "blood donation programs" goes waste? Because, in our country (Nepal), dozens of such programs are conducted by the Red Cross all around the country.
They also separate blood in different kinds (platelets I think it was the term) since it can be storaged for longer, but is not as useful as a full blood transfer.
For any system which regularly collects some resource and distributes it somewhere else, some amount of that resource goes to waste. It is impossible to absolutely eliminate this. Therefore, all resource-distribution systems expect some level of waste.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5836258/ (Young Blood Rejuvenates Old Bodies: A Call for Reflection when Moving from Mice to Men)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5770779/ (Young plasma reverses age‐dependent alterations in hepatic function through the restoration of autophagy) (Money quote: "Recent studies showing the therapeutic effect of young blood on aging‐associated deterioration of organs point to young blood as the solution for clinical problems related to old age.")
It's a bit like the the body with vitamins. At first they thought vitamins were all you needed - then they started discovering micro-nutrients.
Blood is pretty complex - does this include just the highest-order bits of blood, or does it include everything that blood has?
Once back in a hospital setting they could switch to using real blood.
1 - Volume - You need enough fluid in a closed system to maintain pressure to push that fluid.
2. Oxygen carrying capacity - Oxygen binds with red blood cells which then deliver it to every cell in your body.
Right now the prehospital setting can more or less manage #1, we have been for a century with Normal Saline.
There is some stuff circulating (pun intended) regarding fluids that can transport oxygen but it will be years before we can use it
So the question is whether it works in emergency situations, not whether it is as good as the real thing in all ways.
At least in Australia you're encouraged to sign up for this as you donate, which makes it very easy for them to run the needed tests.
Why? Is blood shortage a serious problem in medicine?
It might also change the face of surgery. You know the phrase “he’s bleeding out!” Well, who cares? We have blood pressure to spare, now. We could go through a couple gallons during the surgery and it’d be fine. Just hook them up to the tank. Take your time clamping/microsuturing/cauterizing instead of rushing and making mistakes.
(Or, helpfully, not; a “complete blood transplant”, done at the same time as a bone-marrow transplant, would serve as a much more immediate reinitialization of the body’s immune system in the face of autoimmune disease. Right now we try to do that with hemodialysis, but although we filter out the memory B- and T-cells themselves, we don’t manage to [immediately] filter out their chemosignals, so autoimmune response currently continues for a few days.)
And before you tell me the potential is there, please realize that we currently have only a very partial understanding of how that works, and it would certainly require at least two decades of science to get right.
If this is solution can be scaled up, you would negate the need for the entire blood donation and plasma collection (which is paid for, at least in the US) system overnight. It's a Big Deal.
A cost competitive artificial blood that works as well as whole blood would have a big impact on the current system. An expensive replacement that wasn't as effective for treatment but had longer shelf life or something like that wouldn't have much impact.
This is True Blood™️.
I wonder whether it truly is compatible with every single person, e.g. even RH-null etc?
I also wonder whether religious groups who don't accept blood would potentially accept this.
I understand they don’t accept blood from other people because they believe the blood is tightly related to the soul. So if the blood is 100% artificial I don’t think they would have a reason to not accept it, unless they find another reason, and I’m sure some obscure group will find a reason to not accept artificial blood either.
Some people's spiritual rejections lie more in the "we're playing God we shouldn't do x" whereas what you are describing is something in regard to the sanctity of the blood.
Actually to further my understand, would you be permitted to receive blood that you yourself had donated and had been stored for your personal use in the advent of a medical emergency? Again, I'm not trying to pry or question the validity of your beliefs, just seeking to understand.
This is a complex question. Some things are clear, some are less so. Basically in the Christian Greek scriptures I believe this is only mentioned once: https://www.jw.org/en/publications/bible/study-bible/books/a...
Here is more info: https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/bible-about-...
Our feelings are that blood is sacred, and once it leaves the body it should return to the ground. Basically, blood is life, and life belongs to Jehovah.
Cloning blood would be wrong because its misusing something that has specific guidelines around its use. If you could clone the blood without like actually drawing blood from someone for the procedure, I guess that would be OK. This is weird and I am not totally sure.
We would not be OK with storing our own blood for future use, as this would be a kind of usage, and is contrary to the instructions to pour it out. And this would also be considered consumption/not abstaining.
As I think about this, though, it makes me think about using blood in the contexts of blood testing. Hmm.
Anyway I mean the scriptures give some instructions and we are doing our best to extrapolate to other situations. Things aren't always cut and dry. We just do our best to understand.
I appreciate you clarifying this. I think I understand a bit more, that there are some aspects of medical science construed as idolatrous, as perhaps glorifying an institution of man and not God.
Have you ever heard of any talk of a ceremony that would somehow reconcile these elements? Again I'm ignorant of JW doctrine and priests don't seem as prevalent, but I'm wondering if there could ever be room for some type of transfusion ceremony that allowed for this, in the precense of correct scripture and religious authority, that was "in the service to Jehovah." Sort of a "Deo volente" thing.
To your other question, no, we do not have any sort of ceremony like that. But tbh avoiding blood transfusions is nbd nowadays. There are alternatives.
But, already existing blood volumizers are normally sufficient to save a person who suffered extreme blood loss; restoration of flow is more important than restoration of all the blood contents.
Religion is a disease on its own.
If it actively hinders your survival and well-being, what else would you classify it as? It belongs with depression, schizophrenia and all the other psychological disorders.
This is from someone from a religious country.