Hydroxyethyl Starch Supplemented with Ice Recrystallization Inhibitors Greatly Improves Cryopreservation of Human Red Blood Cells

by Jessica S. Poisson, Jennie G. Briard, Tracey R. Turner, Jason P. Acker, and Robert N. Ben
Volume 15, Issue 4 (Winter 2016/2017)

Cryopreservation is a desirable method for the long-term storage of human red blood cells (RBCs). Current protocols employ high concentrations of glycerol that must be removed from thawed RBCs prior to transfusion. Small-molecule ice recrystallization inhibitors (IRI) can protect RBCs from cryoinjury during the freezing and thawing process in the presence of reduced amounts of glycerol. Although reducing the concentration of glycerol during freezing reduces post-thaw deglycerolization times, thawed RBC units still require post-thaw processing. Herein, we report the cryopreservation of RBCs using the non-permeating cryoprotective agent (CPA) hydroxyethyl starch (HES) supplemented with small-molecule IRIs: (1) PMP-Glc (110 mM); and (2) pBrPh-Glc (30 mM). The results demonstrate that 30 mM pBrPh-Glc in 11.5 % (w/w) HES affords quantitative post-thaw recovery of intact RBCs that are superior to those obtained using glycerol with slow cooling rates, and show the utility of small-molecule IRIs in cryopreservation...

Poisson JS, Briard JG, Turner TR, Acker JP, Ben RN. Hydroxyethyl starch Supplemented with ice recrystallization inhibitors greatly improves cryopreservation of human red blood cells. BioProcess J, 2017; 15(4): 16–21. https://doi.org/10.12665/J154.Ben.

Posted online February 15, 2017.