Freeze-Dried Blood For Israeli Soldiers

According to the Israeli news site Haaretz.com, soldiers in the field may carry an emergency blood supply based on their own blood.

Israeli Defense Force Medical Corp Lieutenant Colonel Amir Blumenfield says that a Nes Tziona-based company is working on the product.

"The idea is to take a soldier's blood, freeze it in laboratory conditions, take out the ice crystals leaving only the blood components. It will look like freeze-dried coffee in a little bag,"

If this product works, it could revolutionize trauma care on the battlefield. At present, the most that medics can do in the field is to provide a transfusion mixture consisting of water and salt (saline solution).

In laboratory tests, it appears that enough of the freeze-dried blood cells survive to be able to carry oxygen to the rest of the body. Blood transfusions are not available outside of organized medical centers, owing to the stringent requirements of storing blood, and making sure that properly typed blood is supplied to each soldier.

The project has been in development for three years, with good results; it is hoped that another two years of development will produce a useful product supplied with every soldier.

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