Examine the mechanisms and consequences of incompatible transfusion

While understanding the mechanisms responsible for alloantibody formation provides an opportunity to identify targets that may be used to prevent this process, many patients have already been alloimmunized secondary to blood product exposure.  Accumulation of alloantibodies can not only make it difficult to find compatible blood for future transfusions, but the presence of these antibodies also increases the risk of hemolytic transfusion reactions, one of the major causes of mortality in transfused patients.  As a result, we are seeking to identify the immunological mechanisms responsible for clearing transfused blood products, in an effort to identify ways to inhibit this process in heavily alloimmunized individuals who need chronic transfusion.

Using a series of model systems, including various models of platelet alloimmunization and RBC models (HOD, KEL, GPA and ABO(H) blood group antigens), we are seeking to understand the factors that regulate the clearance of transfused blood products.  These studies include the development and implementation of unique approaches to track transfused blood products and examine their survival in vivo.  Accordingly, these novel approaches allow us to develop and test multiple strategies aimed at inhibiting various aspects of immune-mediated clearance.

HOD and KEL figure for website

 

Lab members working in this area:

Amanda Mener, Justin Yoo, Ashley Bennett

References