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For Immediate Release
September 19, 2017
AABB Communications Department
Magda Yang
Office: +1.301.215.6569
Transfusion Medicine and Cellular Therapy Professionals Gather in San Diego
WHAT​: 2017 ​AABB Annual Meeting
WHEN:Saturday, Oct. 7 - Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017
WHERE:San Diego Convention Center
111 W Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101

Educational sessions and discussions will include:

Iron in Transfusion Medicine: Consequences of Too Much or Too Little
Recent studies have identified iron deficiency as a potentially hazardous consequence of blood donations. Iron supplementation protocols have been implemented to prevent iron loss, but increased iron accumulation may be associated with an increased risk of organ damage and opportunistic infections. This session will explore mechanisms of altered iron metabolism as a result of blood loss and iron accumulation and will review the effects of regular blood donation on body iron stores. Experts will discuss the pros and cons of iron supplementation and compare the effects of post-transfusion iron overload in patients with sickle cell disease against thalassemia. Session date and time: Monday, Oct. 9; 4:00 - 5:30 pm.

Teen Donors: Handle with Kid Gloves?
Young donors make an important contribution to the blood supply. Recently, some members of the blood community have questioned if younger donors may be at an increased risk for iron deficiency. There are also concerns that the impact of iron deficiency may be higher in younger people who are still undergoing neurocognitive development. This session will focus on the contributions of young donors and recent research on health indicators and iron deficiency in these donors. Session date and time: Saturday, October 7; 4:00 - 5:30 pm.

RBC Storage Lesion: The End of the Beginning
In this session, experts will present an update on the state of the science of the red blood cell (RBC) storage lesion in the context of what we have learned from recently published randomized clinical trials. Attention will focus on determining to which populations the results are, and are not, generalizable. Speakers will also discuss whether RBC storage age is still the most appropriate surrogate for RBC quality and explore other potential RBC quality metrics. This session will challenge the audience in its interpretation of recent RBC storage age trials and will generate vigorous discussion about what alternative metrics should be explored to examine RBC efficacy and safety for vulnerable patient populations. Session date and time: Sunday, Oct. 08; 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm.

Is It Time to Change the Outdate for Red Cells to 35 Days?
Current recommendations indicate that red blood cells (RBCs) can be stored in refrigerators for up to 42 days before being used for transfusion. Recently, some evidence has called into question this timeframe. Research has shown that RBCs undergo metabolic and structural changes during refrigeration. Experts are still debating and studying the potential clinical consequences of these changes. However, no studies have shown definitive evidence that RBC refrigeration may be associated with clinical harm in patients who undergo transfusion. AABB will convene a panel of experts to address RBC refrigeration and storage. Session date and time: Saturday, October 7, from 2:00 to 3:30 pm.

Review the Annual Meeting program here. At AABB’s sole discretion some sessions may be closed to the media.

Other highlights:

  • Opening Session will feature Daniel Kraft, MD, a world-renowned visionary in medicine specializing in hematology/oncology and bone marrow transplantation. Kraft will discuss how rapidly developing technologies are expected to impact the future of medicine and health care. As Dr. Kraft has spoken about in his multiple TED Talks, he will address how medical professionals can harness the power of this new technology “to address humanity’s grand challenges.”   
  • Exhibit Hall opening on Saturday, Oct. 7 – featuring more than 150 exhibiting companies. 

REGISTER HERE to receive a complimentary press registration. Contact the AABB Communications department via phone at +1.301.215.6526 or email for additional information. More about the meeting can be found on the AABB website.

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