Blood Generation on Industrial Scale from Stem Cells – Universal Remedy for Blood Shortage!
Most of you might have come across the situation where one of your friends or family members was in need of blood and had to wait for days to find the right blood type donor.
This medical emergency has found a solution now. Thanks to the researchers from four Scottish Universities, Heriot-Watt, Dundee, Edinburgh and University of Glasgow, who are working towards manufacturing blood on a large scale, using stem cells in collaboration with Scottish blood transfusion service and Scottish enterprise.
Researchers of this project are delighted by the fact that the Scottish funding council has announced a funding of 2.5 million pounds supporting this research.
According to the scientists, blood produced from stem cells is not artificial blood. These red blood cells are the same as those found in the human bodies, but created in a laboratory under controlled conditions.
Blood developed in this way from stem cells will not only put an end to the tedious task of maintaining blood in blood banks for transfusions, but also will ensure donor-recipient compatibility.
Although, this approach can become a possibility in the future, scientists are planning to develop new bioprocesses and engineering solutions to overcome the challenge of the requirement of stem cells on a large scale.
Blood production for use in transfusions began about 18 months ago by the researchers, after receiving a grant from Wellcome Trust. The grant from Scottish Funding Council is the second stage of funding to address the issue of large-scale blood production.
Since this research is still in a budding stage, scientists are urging people not to stop donating blood.
Once the project starts running in a full-fledged manner, mortality rate in the world due to blood shortage can come down drastically.