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Development of artificial blood

The research team of Teruyuki Komatsu, Professor in the Faculty of Science and Engineering (Department of Applied Chemistry), has developed artificial blood that can be used in the event of disaster and at other times when a large number of blood transfusions are needed. The artificial blood is made by bonding albumin, a protein in the blood, with hemoglobin, which carries oxygen, and they function as substitute red blood cells. The blood can be used on anyone at any time, regardless of their blood type. The team collaborated with Keio University School of Medicine, and Sojo University Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Kumamoto University School of Pharmacy to perform experiments on rats and verify the artificial blood’s function and safety.

By 2027, there is predicted to be a shortage of blood equivalent to 890,000 individual shares annually as a result of Japan’s progressively aging population. The artificial blood developed by Professor Komatsu and his team is easy to manufacture and remains stable under storage, so it is expected to be useful not only in emergency medicine but also in treating cerebral infarction and for storing organs for transplant. Once it is put into practical use, there will no doubt be demand for it worldwide.

Details of the research results were published in the British open access scientific journal Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group) (July 29, 2015).

These research results were also reported in the Nihon Sangyo Shimbun and the Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun on July 30, 2015.

  • Nihon Sangyo Shimbun: Chuo University Develops Artificial Blood, “substitute for carrying oxygen, effectiveness verified in rats”, “can be stored long term, worldwide demand”.
  • Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun: Development of Blood Substitute, Chuo University and Others,“highly adaptable, no side effects”.

If you want to learn more, see the following links.

Press release: The Development of “HemoAct”, an artificial oxygen carrier that can be administered to live recipients”, Chuo University, (July 27, 2015) new window

Website of the Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun (July 30, 2015) new window

Published article in Scientific Reports (Open Access)new window

Komatsu Laboratory, Bioinorganic Chemistrynew window