The Research Institute is dedicated to advancing blood safety worldwide through scientific research, education and the promotion of evidence-based policies.
Established more than 50 years ago, the Research Institute has become a world-renowned institute engaged in research ranging from blood donor epidemiology to cellular therapy to virus discovery.
The Research Institute has state-of-the-art equipment to support research related to blood and blood product safety in the areas of molecular biology, immunology, virology, tissue culture, cell processing and epidemiology.
The Research Institute supports the education and training of the next generation of researchers through fellowships, internships, mentoring and classes conducted in San Francisco and around the world.
Dr. Michael Busch principal investigator for the RBC-Omics Study, and his partners at RTI and NHLBI provided a summary of the study’s early findings. The study investigates genetic variations in donors and its’ effects on blood storage and cell function. These findings might open the door to a future in which donor genotype is taken into account. Read more about the research here.
In a recent article published by The Guardian, Dr. Pillai discusses how HIV-infected cells are able to ‘hide’ in the body, and are now being identified and destroyed in a novel strategy. This strategy for finding and destroying this last reservoir of hiding cells could be the key –or holy grail – to eradicating the virus. Read more about the research here.
Dr. Johnson Tran, of Dr. Jackman's lab, received the award for Top Poster at the annual AABB Conference held in Boston. The presentation abstract titled, “Pathogen Reduction of Platelet Rich Plasma Abrogates T Cell Alloresponse in Mice” demonstrated how allogeneic CD4+ and CD8+ T cell activation and effector responses were significantly diminished after pathogen reduction with UV+R treatment. Read more about the AABB Conference here.
The largest nationwide SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence survey, funded by the CDC and supported by 17 blood collection organizations representing blood donations from across all 50 states, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico, published its latest findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). More than 1.5 million samples from blood donations were tested over 11 months, estimating an 83.3% rate for combined infection- and vaccine-induced antibodies, among other observations.
Vitalant is launching the Vitalant Innovation Center in Denver, Colorado, a key part of the Vitalant Research Institute. Vitalant is investing in the Innovation Center as part of its commitment to advancing the science of transfusion medicine. The center will provide scientific research and translational development expertise to design innovative processes for Vitalant and bring new products to the patients it serves.
Blood collection organizations, testing laboratories and affiliated research institutes continue to play a critical role in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and blood centers across the country are proud to be at the forefront.
Antibodies are one of the ways the human body fights infection from the coronavirus. Researchers believe testing for covid-19 antibodies can lead to possible treatments for the virus and help indicate when to reopen society.
We still don’t know how many people have been infected with the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. Not only have countries struggled to roll out wide-scale testing for the virus, those efforts inevitably will miss people who have recovered from an infection. The best way to figure out how far and wide the virus has spread in a population is to look at blood. Antibodies, blood proteins that the immune system produces to attack pathogens, are viral fingerprints that remain long after infections are cleared. Sensitive tests can detect them even in people who never felt a single symptom of COVID-19.
Blood tests for antibodies to the novel coronavirus will be “foundational, fundamental,” to sending Californians back to work, California Gov. Gavin Newsom said on Monday. But medical experts caution that there’s still a lot we don’t know about whether the tests are reliable enough to ensure people’s safety.
People who have recovered from COVID-19 may have an outlet to help those ill with the disease caused by the new coronavirus: Donating their plasma.
In Arizona, a blood donation company, Vitalant (formerly United Blood Services), is starting to allow recovered patients to donate as part of a pilot program.
In a new frontier to fight COVID-19, Bay Area researchers are racing to develop new blood tests that can not only help diagnose the disease, but could help determine whether people become immune after catching it and lay the groundwork for a vaccine.
Vitalant Research Institute is pleased to announce that one of our lead investigators and vice president of research and scientific programs, Dr. Brian Custer, is being inducted into the National Blood Foundation’s (NBF) Hall of Fame.
Earlier this summer, Pooja Bhardwaj, PhD, was awarded the Cynthia Bolovan-Fritts Research Excellence Award at the 9th annual Bay Area Symposium on Viruses held at UC Berkeley. The award is presented annually to an up-and-coming researcher with the best poster at the symposium.
Bethesda, Md. – AABB announced today the names of the transfusion medicine and cellular therapy leaders who will be receiving the Association’s 2019 Memorial Awards. Award recipients will be recognized during the AABB Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Oct. 19-22.
NHLBI of the NIH awarded VRI multiple seven-year contracts for the next evolution of Transfusion Medicine research that will be conducted under REDS. This is the fourth phase (REDS-IV-P) of funding for the REDS programs that VRI/BSRI has received from NHLBI since 1989, making the research institute a 30-year partner in the REDS project history.
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