Blood Plasma Derivatives: Important Products with Wide-Ranging Medical Uses

Immunoglobulins, also known as antibodies, are protein molecules that are produced by plasma cells in response to specific pathogens such as bacteria or viruses entering the body. Immunoglobulins produced from blood plasma donor pools are utilized to treat a variety of health conditions. Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) derived from plasma is administered to patients with immunodeficiencies to help them fight infections. IVIG is also used for various autoimmune and inflammatory diseases such as chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy and Kawasaki disease. Subcutaneous immunoglobulin is sometimes preferred by patients as it can be self-administered at home rather than receive regular IV treatments.

Coagulation Factors
Blood contains various coagulation or clotting factors that work together to stop bleeding when a blood vessel is damaged. Certain genetic disorders can cause deficiencies in specific clotting factors that may lead to uncontrolled bleeding. Blood Plasma Derivatives  are vital for replacement therapy of coagulation factors that are deficient. Examples include Factors VIII and IX for the treatment of hemophilia A and B respectively. Cryoprecipitate is also collected from thawed plasma and contains Factor VIII to control bleeding in hemophiliacs. Prothrombin complex concentrate made from plasma is used for patients with clotting factor deficiencies and those on vitamin K antagonist therapy.

Albumin is the most abundant protein found in blood plasma and helps maintain adequate blood volume and pressure. It also transports hormones, vitamins, and medications throughout the body. Albumin derived from human plasma is utilized as a volume expander during surgeries, trauma cases with significant blood loss, and liver diseases with decreased albumin production. It provides effective oncotic pressure to shift fluid from tissues into the vascular system and expand circulating volume. Albumin solutions are preferred over artificial colloids as volume expanders due to a better safety profile.

Immune Globulin Intravenous
Alpha-1 Proteinase Inhibitor
Alpha-1 proteinase inhibitor (A1-PI) is a protein produced in the liver that protects tissues from damage caused by enzymes released during inflammation. A1-PI deficiency results in uncontrolled proteolytic activity leading to emphysema in the lower respiratory tract. Purified A1-PI from pooled blood plasma is administered to patients through intravenous infusions to replace deficient levels and slow disease progression in cases of emphysema caused by A1-PI deficiency. Regular IV replacement therapy helps preserve lung tissue and function, improving quality of life for affected individuals.

Other Products
In addition to the above major blood plasma derivatives , other useful products created from fractionating plasma include antihemophilic factor XIII for bleeding disorders, C1 esterase inhibitor for hereditary angioedema, and antibodies for Rho(D) immune globulin prophylaxis. Several new recombinant clotting factor therapies have been developed but plasma-derived versions remain a key treatment option, especially in developing nations where cost is a major consideration. Overall, the fractionation of blood plasma into various components forms the basis of life-saving therapies for many rare diseases and acute conditions managed in transfusion medicine and hematology.

The global plasma derivative market exceeded $26 billion in 2021 and is forecast to see steady growth driven by demand for immunoglobulins and coagulation factor replacement therapies. As the world’s population ages and chronic health issues rise in prevalence, the need for blood plasma derivatives will continue expanding to treat wide-ranging hematologic, immunologic, and infectious illnesses. Nations with regulated plasma collection programs and fractionators striving to develop innovative products through ongoing research will be well-positioned to gain market share in the highly competitive biopharmaceutical industry. Strict donor screening, advanced purification technology, and stringent manufacturing standards help ensure a safe, ethical supply of these crucial human-sourced plasma protein therapies.

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