Timeline of transfusion medicine

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This is a timeline of transfusion medicine, listing significant events in the development of the field.

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Time period Development summary
18th century The first known human blood transfusion is performed in the century.
19th century The hypodermic syringe is invented as a device to carry out transfusions. However, despite the large breakthrough, obstacles make very difficult for 19th century surgeons to overcome the problem of coagulation of transfused blood, therefore transfusion can't be completed.[1]
20th century In the early 1900s, transfusions are not yet routine procedures and are performed directly from donor to recipient.[2] A major milestone early in the century is the deffinition by Karl Landsteiner of the different blood groups: A, B, AB, and O. Around 1940 a second major system, called the Rh (Rhesus) blood group system, is identified.[3] As for transfusions, no anticoagulants are found to be effective until World War I.[1] In the 1970s it is discovered that blood transfusions present a significant risk for the transmission of life-threatening viruses.[3] During the 1980s, a major development in transfusion medicine is the widespread adoption of autologous blood techniques as routine transfusion modalities.[4]

Full timeline

Year Month and date Event type Details
1628 Field development English physician William Harvey demonstrates that blood circulates from the heart to the arteries and then back through the veins.[5] United Kingdom
1665 Field development English physician Richard Lower performs the first documented blood transfusion using dogs and notes a color difference between veins and arteries.[6][7][8] United Kingdom
1667 Field development French physician Jean Baptiste Denis performs analogous experiments to those of Richard Lower but later extending them to humans. Denis is credited to have performed the first lamb to man blood transfusion with success.[8] France
1795 Field development American physician Philip Sying Physik performs the first known human blood transfusion.[9]
1816 Field development Scottish physician John Henry Leacock establishes the principle that donor and recipient must be of the same species.[9] United Kingdom
1818 Field development English obstetrician James Blundell completes the first successful human blood transfusion in a series of eight women to manage postpartum hemorrhage. Between 1825 and 1830, Blundell performs ten transfusions, five of which prove beneficial to his patients, and publishes these results. He also devises various instruments for performing transfusions and proposes rational indications.[10][6][11][7] United Kingdom
1831 Field development Transfusion of physiologic solutions is performed independently by O'Shaughnessy and Lewins in Great Britain.[12] United Kingdom
1853 Instrumental Scottish physician Alexander Wood invents the hypodermic syringe, leading to the development of new devices to carry out transfusions.[9] United Kingdom
1857 Instrumental Alfred Higginson from Liverpool invents a rubber injection syringe with ball valves, inserted between the receptacle and the recipient’s vein.[8][13] United Kingdom
1860 Field development Ignaz Josef Neudörfer uses sodium bicarbonate to counteract coagulation, with unsuccessful results.[8]
1865 Field development Swiss physician Joseph-Antoine Roussel from Geneva first employs a direct arm-to-arm transfusion method.[9][8] Switzerland
1870s Field development A period of enthusiasm for transfusion of blood substitutes (milk, ect. …) is experienced, particularly in the United States[9]
1870 – 1871 Blood transfusions are performed on the battlefield in the Franco-Prussian War.[9]
1870 Organization The British Red Cross is founded.[14] United Kingdom
1878 Field development French haematologist Georges Hayem perfects a saline solution, which can serve as a substitute of blood.[9] France
1901 Field development Austrian biologist Karl Landsteiner and his associates define the different blood groups: A, B, AB, and O.[15][16][17][18]
1902 Field development Alfred Decastello and Adriano Sturli add bloodtype AB to the classification system.[19]
1907 Field development American pathologist Ludvig Hektoen from Chicago is the first to suggest that donors and patients should be screened for compatibility (now known as Cross-matching).[19] United States
1907 Field development American haematologist Reuben Ottenberg performs the first blood transfusion using blood typing and cross-matching.[5][9][12] United States
1908 Field development French surgeon Alexis Carrel successfully transfuses blood directly from the artery of a donor to the recipient's vein, thus avoiding the problem of clotting.[5]
1908 Field development Italian physician Carlo Moreschi describes the principle of antiglobulin test.[20] Italy
1912 Field development Roger Lee shows that O blood can be transfused to a person with any blood type (universal donor) and that a person with AB blood can receive blood from any blood group (universal recipient).[19]
1913 Instrumental The Kimpton-Brown apparatus starts being used to improve veno-venous transfusion.[8]
1914 Field development Belgian medical doctor Albert Hustin in Brussels and Argentine physician Luis Agote in Buenos Aires discover that blood clotting could be stopped by the addition of the calcium chelator sodium citrate.[21] Argentina, Belgium
1916 Field development American virologist Francis Peyton Rous and J.R. Turner at the Rockefeller Institute in New York produce a solution of glucose and citrate which stops blood from clotting and allow the red cells to stay alive for a few weeks.[9][21] United States
1918 Facility English-born medical researcher Oswald Hope Robertson establishes the first blood depot while serving during World War I.[9]
1921 Field development Red Cross secretary Percy Lane Oliver, following a request from the Red Cross service, pioneers the voluntary blood donor scheme in London.[9] United Kingdom
1925 Organization Russian physician Alexander Bogdanov founds the first academic institution devoted to the science of blood transfusion in Moscow.[9] Russia
1926 Field development The British Red Cross starts the world's first formal transfusion service.[5] United Kingdom
1930 Field development American medical researcher Charles R. Drew discovers that blood could be separated into plasma and red blood cells.[9]
1932 Facility Russian surgeon Serge Yudin establishes the first blood bank in Leningrad.[9][5] Russia
1935 Field development Earl W.Flosdorf and Stuart Mudd develop the process of lyophilisation that facilitates the long-term storage of plasma.[9]
1935 Organization The International Society of Blood Transfusion is founded.[22]
1936 Facility During the Spanish Civil War, the development of electrical refrigeration results in the first blood banks set up by Frederic Durán-Jordà in Barcelona and Norman Bethune in Madrid.[9] Spain
1936 Instrumental The first vacuum blood collection bottle is marketed.[9]
1937 Facility Hungarian Jewish-American physician Bernard Fantus establishes the first hospital blood bank of the United States, in Chicago.[9] United States
1939 Field development The Rh blood group system is developed by Karl Landsteiner, Alexander S. Wiener, Philip Levine, and R.E. Stetson.[19]
1941 Field development American surgeon Isidor Ravdin successfully uses albumin in transfusions in victims of the attack on Pearl Harbor.[19] United States
1943 Field development Australian haematologist John Freeman Loutit and British haematologist Patrick Mollison develop a solution of acid-citrate-dextrose, allowing greater volumes of blood to be transfused and making longer-term storage possible.[19]
1944 Field development Dried plasma is used in the treatment of wounded soldiers during World War II.[19]
1944 Field development American protein scientist Edwin Joseph Cohn develops cold ethanol fractionation, a process to break down plasma into its different fractions.[19] United States
1945 Field development British immunologist Robin Coombs, British hematologist Arthur Mourant and Robert Race describe the use of antihuman globulin to identify “incomplete” antibodies.[19]
1946 Field development R. A. Kekwick, Margaret E. Mackay, and B. R. Record produce fibrinogen and prothrombin from plasma separated by precipitation with ether.[19]
1950 Field development British cryobiologist Audrey Smith discovers the use of glycerol to protect human red blood cells during freezing.[19] United Kingdom
1950 Instrumental Carl Walter and William P. Murphy Jr. develop the plastic bag for blood collection.[19] United States
1952 Field development Gibson et al. demonstrate that plastic systems allow removal of plasma after sedimentation and centrifugation.[19]
1958 Field development French immunologist Jean Dausset describes the first leukocyte antigen MAC (which is today HA-A2) on the surface of blood cells. This whould determine whether blood from one person might be successfully transfused into another individual.[19][23] France
1960 Field development Alan Solomon and John L. Fahey develop plasmapheresis, a procedure for separating whole blood into plasma and red blood cells.
1961 Field development Citrate-phosphate-dextrose solution becomes the anticoagulant of choice after studies show its efficacy in blood stored up to 28 days.[24]
1964 Field development American scientist Judith Graham Pool discovers a method of concentrating clotting factors from fresh frozen plasma, allowing patients with hemophilia to receive transfusions outside of the hospital. United States
1969 Field development S. Murphy and F. Gardner publish paper demonstrating the feasibility of storing platelets at room temperature, thus revolutionizing platelet transfusion therapy.[25][26]
1970 Field development Monoclonal antibodies come into use.[20]
1970 Field development Automated systems are introduced at the immunohematology laboratory.[20]
1971 Field development Testing blood for Hepatitis B is first conducted in the United States.[18][25] United States
1972 Instrumental American medical technologist Herb Cullis invents the apheresis machine, which is used to extract one cellular component, returning the rest of the blood to the donor.[27][25] United States
1979 Field development CPDA-1 is introduced as a new anticoagulant preservative, which increases the blood supply and facilitates resource-sharing among blood banks.[9]
1980s Field development Additive solutions extend the shelf-life of red blood cells to 49 days.[9]
Mid-1980s Field development Donated blood begins to be tested for HIV.[20]
1998 Field development It becomes possible to screen for the presence of HCV nucleic acids using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technology. This molecular detection system can identify HCV in donors before they have produced antibodies.[3]
1999 Field development Nucleic acid amplification testing is introduced for active viruses in donated blood.[9]
2005 Field development The United States Food and Drug Administration approves the first West Nile virus blood test to screen blood donors. United States
2008 Organization The International Council for Commonality in Blood Banking Automation is incorporated.[28] United States

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External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Blood Transfusions". bhatmanjim.weebly.com. Retrieved 12 October 2018. 
  2. "THE BLOOD DONOR EVOLUTION". circulatingnow.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved 12 October 2018. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "Blood transfusion". britannica.com. Retrieved 12 October 2018. 
  4. Popovsky, Mark A. "Autologous Blood Transfusion in the 1990s: Where Is It Heading?". American Journal of Clinical Pathology. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Arnold, James R. Health under Fire: Medical Care during America's Wars. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Platelets in Thrombotic and Non-Thrombotic Disorders: Pathophysiology, Pharmacology and Therapeutics: an Update (Paolo Gresele, Neal S. Kleiman, José A. Lopez, Clive P. Page ed.). 
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Timeline of Major Hematology Landmarks". scribd.com. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 "The Development of Blood Transfusion: the Role of Albert Hustin and the Influence of World War I". researchgate.net. Retrieved 10 October 2018. 
  9. 9.00 9.01 9.02 9.03 9.04 9.05 9.06 9.07 9.08 9.09 9.10 9.11 9.12 9.13 9.14 9.15 9.16 9.17 9.18 9.19 9.20 Cannas, Giovanna; Thomas, Xavier. "Supportive care in patients with acute leukaemia: historical perspectives". PMC 4385068Freely accessible. PMID 25369611. doi:10.2450/2014.0080-14. 
  10. Simmers, Louise M; Simmers-Nartker, Karen; Simmers-Kobelak, Sharon. DHO Health Science Updated. 
  11. Vincent, Jean-Louis; Abraham, Edward; Kochanek, Patrick; Moore, Frederick A.; Fink, Mitchell P. Textbook of Critical Care E-Book. 
  12. 12.0 12.1 Barash, Paul G. Clinical Anesthesia. 
  13. MCKENZIE, DAN. "Alfred Higginson and His Syringe: with a Side-glance at the Clyster.". 
  14. "British Red Cross". redcross.org.uk. Retrieved 12 October 2018. 
  15. DK. 1000 Inventions and Discoveries. 
  16. Van Luven, Lynne; Page, Kathy. In the Flesh: Twenty Writers Explore the Body. 
  17. Hillyer, Christopher D. Blood Banking and Transfusion Medicine: Basic Principles & Practice. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 "What is Hematology? - Definition & History". study.com. Retrieved 7 September 2018. 
  19. 19.00 19.01 19.02 19.03 19.04 19.05 19.06 19.07 19.08 19.09 19.10 19.11 19.12 19.13 "Milestones in Transfusion Medicine". hematology.org. Retrieved 4 October 2018. 
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 De Silvestro, Giustina; Veronesi, Arianna; Vicarioto, Maria. Transfusion Medicine and Patient Safety. 
  21. 21.0 21.1 McCann, Shaun R. A History of Haematology: From Herodotus to HIV. 
  22. "ISBT is the global knowledge network for Transfusion Medicine". isbtweb.org. Retrieved 12 October 2018. 
  23. "Jean Dausset a scientific pioneer: intuition and creativity for the patients (1916–2009)". PMC 2738734Freely accessible. PMID 19734432. doi:10.3324/haematol.2009.014126. 
  24. "Early blood transfusions: from concept to practice". healio.com. Retrieved 11 October 2018. 
  25. White, Nathan J.; Ward, Kevin R.; Pati, Shibani; Strandenes, Geir; Cap, Andrew P. "Hemorrhagic blood failure: Oxygen debt, coagulopathy and endothelial damage". PMC 5488798Freely accessible. PMID 28328671. doi:10.1097/TA.0000000000001436. 
  26. "A Brief History of Apheresis Platelet Collection at the Western Province Blood Transfusion Service" (PDF). sabloodcongress.org. Retrieved 25 September 2018. 
  27. "ISBT 128". bbguy.org. Retrieved 12 October 2018.