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blood testing / screening
Jul 29, 2010

hi dr. Mc Gowan can you please tell me what this means? i got this from the nybc blood center in nyc. Scientists at NYBC were pioneers in the field of virus inactivation, developing a solvent/detergent process to eliminate dangerous viruses from plasma and plasma products, such as the clotting factor used by hemophiliacs. The solvent/detergent process destroys the coat of certain viruses - including HIV and hepatitis B and C viruses - inactivating the viruses without harming the fragile blood proteins in plasma. Every pint of blood collected is screened for markers of a variety of transfusion-transmissible diseases (HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HTLV-1/2 and syphilis) using serological as well as molecular (Nucleic Acid Amplification Testing) methods. Products that test positive for any of these markers are not released for transfusion. We also perform additional, confirmatory tests on donors whose screening results are positive in order to provide these individuals with relevant medical information and to provide the basis for notification of donors of their eligibility for future blood donations.

Response from Dr. McGowan

Thanks for your post.

The blood banks screen donor blood samples for viruses that could be transmitted in the blood such as HIV, HTLV and hepatitis..if positive they do not use this blood for donations. As a second precaution when they generate plasma (this is the liquid part of the blood with the cells removed), which can be used for people with blood clotting problems, they can clean the plasma with detergents. These detergents will break up the cell membranes of the viruses by dissolving them but not damage the clotting factors and proteins. These could not be used on whole blood (with the red blood cells included) or in people because they might damage the blood cells.


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