Initial experimental experience of triple-knockout pig red blood cells as potential sources for transfusion in alloimmunized patients with sickle cell disease

Academic Article


  • Background: Blood transfusion remains important in the treatment of patients with sickle cell disease (SCD). However, alloimmunization after blood transfusion is associated with patient morbidity and mortality. Triple-knockout (TKO) pigs (i.e., pigs in which the three known xenoantigens to which humans have anti-pig antibodies have been deleted) may be an alternative source of RBCs for these patients because many humans have no preformed antibodies to TKO pig RBCs (pRBCs). Methods and materials: In an in vitro study, plasma from alloimmunized (n = 12) or non-alloimmunized (n = 12) SCD patients was used to determine IgM/IgG binding to, and CDC of, TKO pRBCs. In an in vivo study, after an estimated 25% of blood volume was withdrawn from two capuchin monkeys, CFSE-labeled TKO pRBCs were transfused. Loss of TKO pRBCs was monitored by flow cytometry, and 7 weeks later, 25% of blood was withdrawn, and CFSE-labeled monkey RBCs were transfused. Results: The in vitro study demonstrated that plasma from neither alloimmunized nor non-alloimmunized SCD patients bound IgM/IgG to, or induced CDC of, TKO pRBCs. In the in vivo study, survival of TKO pRBCs in the two capuchin monkeys was of 5 and 7 days, respectively, whereas after allotransfusion, survival was >28 days. Conclusions: In conclusion, (1) in the present limited study, no antibodies were detected that cross-reacted with TKO pRBCs, and (2) TKO pigs may possibly be an alternate source of RBCs in an emergency if no human RBCs are available.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Transfusion  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Yamamoto T; Bikhet MH; Marques MB; Nguyen HQ; Cui Y; Javed M; Raza SS; Ayares D; Iwase H; Cooper DKC
  • Start Page

  • 3104
  • End Page

  • 3118
  • Volume

  • 61
  • Issue

  • 11