World's first human trials of synthetic blood 'agreed'
Thursday 30 May 2013
The world's first human trials of synthetic blood will take place in Scotland, it has been reported.
Researchers from the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine (SCRM) in Edinburgh have been granted a licence to make blood from stem cells which can be tested on humans, The Scotsman has reported.
The licence from the UK's Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) will allow scientists at SCRM to attempt to manufacture blood on an industrial scale which will help to tackle shortages and stop the transfer of infections from blood donors, according to the paper.
These trials on humans will be the first stage in establishing more large-scale clinical trials and could result in regular use of synthetic blood.
Researchers will use stem cells from adult donors - known as induced pluripotent stem cells - as part of this project instead of the more controversial embryotic ones.
Project leader Marc Turner said: "In the first part of the project we used human embryonic stem cell lines and one of the problems with using those lines is you can't choose what the blood group is going to be.
"Over the last few years there has been a lot of work on induced pluripotent stem cells and with those an adult can donate a small piece of skin or a blood sample and the technology allows for stem-cell lines to be derived from that sample.
"This makes our life a lot easier in some ways because that means we can identify a person with the specific blood type we want and get them to donate a sample from which we could manufacture the cell lines."
With the licence scientists will also be able to work on stem cell products used to help patients with Parkinson's disease, diabetes, cancer or those who have suffered a stroke.
Other research projects have previously gained licences for human trials of other stem cell products but this is the first time synthetic blood will be tested on humans, according to The Scotsman.
Prof Turner hopes that the preparations to begin human testing will be completed in the next two to three years, the paper reported.
Life & Style blogs
Blood test that predicts Alzheimer's disease
Pakistan vs Paul Smith: Sandal-wearers bemused by famed British designer's attempts to sell traditional Peshawari chappal-style shoes for the distinctly untraditional sum of £300
Lego told off by 7-year-old girl for promoting gender stereotypes
Apple iOS 7.1 update: Boxes are out, circles are in; CarPlay support and no more random resets
Titanfall: Release date, gameplay basics, DLC and everything else you need to know
- 1 Pakistan vs Paul Smith: Sandal-wearers bemused by famed British designer's attempts to sell traditional Peshawari chappal-style shoes for the distinctly untraditional sum of £300
- 2 Family forced to flee home after discovering 'terrifying' nest of spiders in bananas
- 3 First Kiss: Filmmaker gets 20 strangers to make out on YouTube with awkward results
- 4 Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
- 5 Bob Crow death: 'Admired by his members, feared by employers' - Tributes pour in for RMT union leader and 'working class hero' Bob Crow
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: One of the largest mobile advert...
£20000 - £23000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: Our client specialises in creati...
£30000 - £50000 per annum + Very Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Private Cli...
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Very Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Residential...