General, Research, Technology

Can a blood transfusion cure a coronavirus?

Vaccination usually meansthe introduction into the body of weakened or killed microorganisms (viruses) designed to create a stable immunity to possible future infectious diseases - that is, to isolate antibodies. But what if a vaccine has not yet been developed for a virus? Yes, we are talking about coronavirus now. In this case, scientists have developed a method of treatment such as transfusion of blood plasma. For this, plasma is taken from those people who have already had a coronavirus, and then transfused to patients to produce antibodies against this infection. How does it work, and why does blood plasma have such miraculous properties?

Blood plasma is the key to treating many diseases


  • 1 What is human blood plasma
  • 2 Does plasma help treat coronavirus?
  • 3 How to get blood plasma
  • 4 What is the difference between a blood donor and a plasma donor
  • 5 Why transfuse blood plasma

What is human blood plasma

Plasma - this is the liquid part of the blood, it consists of 90%water, as well as proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and coagulants. In scientific terms, plasma is an intercellular substance of liquid blood tissue. To get it, medical workers use special equipment that separates the plasma from other blood particles, including red blood cells. Therefore, the plasma is not red, like blood, but has a yellowish tint.

The plasma separated from the red blood cells is then used for transfusion, and the red blood cells are returned to the donor. This process is called plasmapheresis.

Blood plasma (yellow) is separated from red blood cells and other particles (red). The yellow part is poured onto the patient, the red part is returned to the donor

Does plasma help treat coronavirus?

Plasma is used to treat many viruses, including coronavirus

Suppose a person is infected with a coronavirus, andhis immunity was so strong that he was able to overcome the infection (not without the help of drugs). The virus was defeated due to the fact that the immune system secreted many antibodies SPECIALLY against this infection. Antibodies already know what to do with this type of virus, and with repeated illness (if any) a person will be able to overcome the coronavirus faster.

To help other people with less strong immunity, a person who got coronavirustake blood plasma and transfer it to the patientto man. In this plasma, as we recall, it contains various substances, platelets for healing and ... the very antibodies that the immunity of the donor has developed. After getting into the body of a sick person, antibodies begin kill coronavirusbecause they already had that experience. Simply put, more experienced reinforcements in the form of special forces came to the aid of the "soldiers" of the patient’s body.

Due to the fact that the patient himself alsoantibodies to this virus are developed, albeit more slowly, by joint efforts they manage to defeat the infection. In fact, human blood plasma is the same vaccine that helps in the fight against coronavirus. But it is very small, because not everyone wants to become plasma donors.

First about plasma transfusion thought in South Korea where the flash of COVID-19occurred shortly after China. Back in February 2020, the first trials of treatment of coronavirus with blood transfusion were performed there, and they were completed successfully. Patients recovered. Together with quarantine measures in the country, an epidemic of a dangerous virus was suppressed.

To better understand the benefits of plasma transfusion, read what happens in the body when it is attacked by a coronavirus.

Not so long ago, they began to adopt this practice.other countries, including Russia. In Moscow, blood plasma donation points have already been organized, which are taken from those who have already had a coronavirus. Money is being paid for this, but it seems to me that the feeling that in doing so you might save someone's life is much more valuable. Share in our Telegram chat if you would become a plasma donor and why. At the time of this writing, 3 people were cured of coronavirus in Moscow due to transfusion of blood plasma.

How to get blood plasma

To get it you need blood plasma donors. Previously, the blood was spun in a centrifuge untilhigh speeds, as a result of 500 ml of collected blood received only 250-300 ml of plasma. This method is not the most effective, since in this case it is impossible to return the red blood cells and some other useful substances back to the donor.

A centrifuge, in which the blood is dispersed, and the plasma itself is released upward, and the red blood cells remain in the sediment

And scientists have developed automatic plasmapheresis method, which is now widely used in medicine. Blood plasma donation takes about 40 minutes.

  • First, blood is taken from the donor;
  • Then, using a special device ("bell"), the plasma is separated. From 350 ml of blood, 230 ml of blood plasma is obtained;
  • The cellular components of the blood, including red blood cells, are returned to the device for collection and returned to the donor. In fact, there is a reverse blood transfusion, but already without plasma;
  • To compensate for the loss of donor fluid, he is additionally injected with a portion of physiological saline.
  • A machine that releases plasma from the blood and returns red blood cells to a donor

    Plasma derived from blood frozen to –30 ° C within 1 hour. Otherwise, it will lose its properties.

    What is the difference between a blood donor and a plasma donor

    As you can see, the process blood plasma donation not at all like ordinary blood donation. Normal blood donation takes about 10 minutes, while plasma donors must be connected to a special device for 40 minutes.

    In addition, blood plasma donation may be more dangerous to humans. If you take plasma automaticallyplasmapheresis, it is important that throughout the procedure additional substances enter the blood to reduce its coagulability. There are a lot of platelets in the plasma that are responsible for coagulation, and if you immediately remove a large number of them, the blood can clot - its large accumulations in the vessels are formed, and the person’s blood circulation may be disturbed.

    Therefore, for the delivery of blood plasma, as a rule, pay more moneythan for the usual donation of blood. In Moscow for every 150 ml of plasma now pay 1250 rubles, for 600 ml - 5 000 rubles. For a regular donation, 600 ml of blood is paid less about 3600 rubles.

    A person can only receive plasma from a person with the same blood typelike him. You can not mix them.

    Why transfuse blood plasma

    In fact, basically the plasma is not transfused forthe fight against coronavirus (this is only now the case), and in cases of impaired blood coagulation or if a person has lost too much blood. In this case, the loading dose of platelets will not only help restore coagulation, but will also help to heal even serious wounds faster. Plasma transfusion is much more effective than whole blood transfusion, since a person can send only those substances that are necessary.

    In addition, blood plasma is used to createmedications. It contains many pills, including those prescribed for the treatment of immune deficiency, neurological, infectious and autoimmune diseases, heart failure and others. Every year, doctors are finding new opportunities for using plasma.

    Collected blood plasma is stored for 3 years at temperatures below –30 ° C.

    The idea that blood possesses almostmagical properties, took place at the dawn of the emergence of modern society. Therefore, some experiments in this area are still ongoing, and, as we see, they are very successful.