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Shock. 2010 Jul;34(1):40-5. doi: 10.1097/SHK.0b013e3181d494fd.

Murine blood banking: characterization and comparisons to human blood.

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Department of Surgery, University of Cincinnati, 231 Albert Sabin Way, Cincinnati, OH 45267, USA.


Blood transfusion remains an essential treatment of acute anemia. Current storage processes allow the efficient administration of blood products. Erythrocytes undergo morphological and biochemical changes during storage that may affect outcomes after transfusion. A reliable small-animal model would be ideal to examine the effects of stored blood products after transfusion. The objective of this study was to characterize the storage of murine erythrocytes for future application to animal models of acute anemia. Blood samples were collected from male mice and human volunteers, separated into components, and stored. At intervals, morphological and biochemical analysis was performed. Lactate, potassium, hemoglobin, and hemolysis were determined, and cell morphology was evaluated with light microscopy. Murine packed red blood cells (pRBCs) aged more rapidly than human samples. Murine pRBCs exhibited higher lactate levels (34.9 +/- 1.3 mmol/L vs. 18.1 +/- 1.0 mmol/L, mouse vs. human) and more severe acidosis as indicated by pH (6.56 +/- 0.02 vs. 6.79 +/- 0.04, mouse vs. human). Murine pRBCs hemolyzed earlier (11.2 +/- 3.7 g vs. 0.7 +/- 0.3 g, mouse vs. human after 21 days of storage) and more rapidly than human pRBCs. Corpuscular changes consistent with red cell storage lesions appeared earlier in murine samples compared with human stored pRBCs. Compared with human pRBCs, murine pRBCs exhibit similar but more accelerated aging processes under standard storage conditions. Characterization of the murine red cell storage lesion will allow the application of stored blood components to future investigations into the treatment of acute anemia in experimental murine models.

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