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Storing blood

Recent studies

Eye drops made from blood

Plasma isolated from blood can be helpful as eye drops for people with severe dry eye syndrome, a condition which affects over seven percent of Australians. Over the last few years, the Blood Service has manufactured eye drops for patients made from their own serum, which are packaged into single use droppers which they can freeze and keep for up to a year. Read more

Storing platelets for longer: glucose additives and cold storage

Platelets are a blood component used to treat patients who are at risk of bleeding. However, platelets' functions alter during storage and, under the current storage conditions, they need to be used within five days of collection. This research is exploring a variety of ways to extend the shelf life of platelets by using alternative storage solutions including refrigeration and freezing. Read more

Healing wounds with blood products

Platelets isolated from blood are rich in growth factors that accelerate wound healing. This project seeks to harness this healing power by studying how platelet gels that can be used as biologically active wound dressings and the use of active growth factors in platelets to ‘feed’ cells grown for therapeutic purposes. This project will explore ways to manufacture platelet gels and to extract and use growth factors from both fresh and expired platelets.

Frozen blood research

After over five years of research, The Blood Service’s Product Development and Storage team in Sydney, led by Dr Denese Marks, has developed a process for preparing deep-frozen blood components. Read more

Testing technology to kill viruses

A range of technologies known as (PRT) can inactivate viruses in platelets and plasma using ultraviolet light. The Blood Service is currently studying whether these technologies can kill viruses which are emerging threats in Australia, such as dengue fever and chikungunya. Treated platelets and plasma will then be tested in the laboratory to check whether the treatment changes important functions of the blood products.

Selected Publications

Holley A, Marks DC, Johnson L, Reade MC, Badloe JF, Noorman F: Frozen blood products: clinically effective and potentially ideal for remote Australia. Anaesthesia and intensive care 2013, 41(1):10-19. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23362885

Johnson L, Coorey CP, Marks DC: The hemostatic activity of cryopreserved platelets is mediated by phosphatidylserine-expressing platelets and platelet microparticles. Transfusion 2014, 54(8):1917-1926. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24527873

Johnson L, Loh YS, Kwok M, Marks DC: In vitro assessment of buffy-coat derived platelet components suspended in SSP+ treated with the INTERCEPT Blood system. Transfusion medicine (Oxford, England) 2013, 23(2):121-129. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23480103

Johnson L, Reade MC, Hyland RA, Tan S, DC. M: In vitro comparison of cryopreserved and liquid platelets: potential clinical implications. Tranfusion 2014, 5. Nov 5. doi: 10.1111/trf.12915. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25371169

Johnson L, Winter KM, Kwok M, Reid S, Marks DC: Evaluation of the quality of blood components prepared using the Reveos automated blood processing system. Vox Sang 2013, 105(3):225-235. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23713603

Marks DC, Faddy HM, Johnson L: Pathogen reduction technologies. ISBT Science Series 2014, 9(1):44-50. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/voxs.12085

Reade MC, Marks DC, Johnson L, Irving DO, Holley AD: Frozen platelets for rural Australia: the CLIP trial. Anaesthesia and intensive care 2013, 41(6):804-805. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24180724

Sparrow RL, Sran A, Healey G, Veale MF, Norris PJ: In vitro measures of membrane changes reveal differences between red blood cells stored in saline-adenine-glucose-mannitol and AS-1 additive solutions: a paired study. Transfusion 2014, 54(3):560-568. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23869602

Veale MF, Healey G, Sparrow RL: Longer storage of red blood cells is associated with increased in vitro erythrophagocytosis. Vox Sang 2013. 3: 219-226 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24117950

Veale MF, Healey G, Sran A, Payne KA, Zia M, Sparrow RL: AS-7 improved in vitro quality of red blood cells prepared from whole blood held overnight at room temperature. Transfusion 2014. Epub ahead of print  Jul 15. doi: 10.1111/trf.12779. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25039791

Winter KM, Johnson L, Kwok M, Vidovic D, Hyland RA, Mufti N, Erickson A, Marks DC: Red blood cell in vitro quality and function is maintained after S-303 pathogen inactivation treatment. Transfusion 2014, 54(7):1798-1807. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/trf.12545