Every doctor’s dream is to have readily available blood at their disposal. Artificial blood seems like a good alternative. However, in reality, the situation is quite different. Red blood cells can be produced in the lab. Though the current technique which prods stem cells into action can only produce a low amount at best.
But it seems a solution may have been discovered by British researchers. They used a technique that can reliably produce an unlimited number of red blood cells. The trick is to create “immortalized” premature red blood cells that you can culture as much as you like. Thus, making mass production a real possibility.
A British researcher said “The biggest challenge is translating the technique to commercial manufacturing. We have produced a few liters of blood in the lab, but there’s a big difference between that and the massive volumes needed to serve even a single hospital. Although the UK’s National Health Service is planning to trial artificial blood this year, this new technique won’t be involved.”
Don’t expect to see a complete switch to artificial blood even if this new technique was ready for the current situation. Any mass production is most likely to focus on people with rare blood types where a donation is hard to come by.