Researchers in the UK have developed a technique to culture universal type-O blood from stem cells. It’s the first time scientists have manufactured blood to the appropriate quality and safety standards for transfusion into a human being. It’s a breakthrough that could eventually end blood shortages in emergencies.
Marc Turner is the principal researcher in this £5 million (USD $8.37 million ) project, one that’s funded by the Wellcome Trust. He recently told The Telegraph about how he made red blood cells fit for clinical transfusion.
During the process, red blood cells are cultured from induced pluripotent stems cells. These are cells that have been extracted from humans and then “rewound” into stem cells. Biochemical conditions similar to what happens inside the human body facilitate the conversion of these undifferentiated cells into viable red blood cells — the rare universal blood type O. Because the blood can be produced with the required quality, clinical trials are set to begin. Via Soon We May Be Mass Producing Human Blood.