Blood is essential to life. It transports oxygen and nutrients to the cells and carries away waste products.
Fluosol is, to date, the only synthetic blood product approved by the FDA for human use. It is made from fluorocarbons, which don't combine to any other chemical. It isn't rejected to because it isn't a protein. It may be put into the bloodstream until the body can make its own blood cells.
Researchers are now trying to create artificial hemoglobin, the substance that carries oxygen through the body. Dr Kiyoshi Nagai, of the Medical Research Council laboratories in Cambridge, used bacteria to produce modified hemoglobin. The new hemoglobin has improved oxygen-carrying characteristics. Professor Chien Ho, Ph.D. and researchers at Carnegie Mellon, used genetic engineering techniques to create artificial hemoglobin. By building mutations into the hemoglobinmolecule, they enhanced the way the artificial hemoglobin functioned.