Table of Contents
Journal of Blood Transfusion
Volume 2013, Article ID 154838, 7 pages
Research Article

Process Improvement by Eliminating Mixing of Whole Blood Units after an Overnight Hold Prior to Component Production Using the Buffy Coat Method

1Canadian Blood Services, 1800 Alta Vista Drive, Ottawa, ON, K1G 4J5, Canada K1G 4J5
2Canadian Blood Services, Centre for Blood Research, 2350 Health Sciences Mall, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z3
3Canadian Blood Services Research and Development, McMaster University, HSC 4N66, 1200 Main Street West, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8N 3Z5
4Canadian Blood Services Research and Development, 8249 114th Street, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2R8
5Canadian Blood Services, Network Centre for Applied Development, Suite 207, 2150 Western Parkway, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1V6

Received 27 February 2013; Revised 16 May 2013; Accepted 16 May 2013

Academic Editor: Erwin Strasser

Copyright © 2013 Cherie Mastronardi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The elimination of a thorough manual mixing of whole blood (WB) which takes place following the overnight hold, but before the first centrifugation step, during buffy coat component production at Canadian Blood Services (CBS) was investigated. WB was pooled after donation and split. Pairs of platelet, red blood cell (RBC), and plasma components were produced, with half using the standard method and half using a method in which the mixing step was eliminated. Quality assessments included yield, pH, CD62P expression and morphology for platelets, hemoglobin, hematocrit, hemolysis, and supernatant K+ for RBCs, and volume and factor VIII activity levels for plasma. All components, produced using either method, met CBS quality control criteria. There were no significant differences in platelet yield between components produced with and without mixing. A significant difference was seen for RBC hemolysis at expiry (), but for both groups, levels met quality control requirements. Noninferiority of components produced without mixing was confirmed for all parameters. Manual mixing is laborious and has a risk of repetitive strain for production staff and its significance is unclear. Elimination of this step will improve process efficiencies without compromising quality.