Principal Investigator Dr. Rinat Abramovitch of the Hadassah Medical Center’s Goldyne Savad Institute of Gene Therapy has been awarded a grant from the European Society of Anesthesiology (ESA) for her work regarding the beneficial effect of using fresh blood for transfusions in surgery patients.

The 60,000-euro grant is awarded each year to only two recipients.  Dr. Abramovitch’s study, entitled “Modifications of the Liver Regenerative Process as a Consequence of Bleeding and Transfusion of Red Blood Cells with Different Storage Time: Fresh vs. ‘Aged’,” has thus far revealed that patients who lose blood during and after surgery for tumor excision do better with transfused blood that has just been donated, as opposed to blood that has been stored for a long time in the blood bank. “The liver regenerates better with newer blood,” Dr. Abramovitch explains. “No one knew that before.”

Her finding could, for example, affect the treatment of patients who undergo partial hepatectomy. “In these difficult times, when funding for research is hard to get,” comments Dr. Abramovitch, “this grant helps greatly to continue and deepen our study in the next three years. Of course, it is very flattering to get world recognition of the importance of our work by a European organization, in addition to the recognition and support received from the Chief Scientist of the Israeli Health Ministry.”

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