Veterans Affairs Canada – Development of new approaches to improve the supply of universal “O-type” red blood cells.

Well-being, Health and Biomedical Discovery


Academic Unit: inquire with unit

Memorial Deadline: Wednesday 10th, April 2024

External Deadline: Monday 15th, April 2024


Blood transfusions are used as a life-saving intervention in military and civilian health care systems. On the battlefield deaths are classified as non-survivable or survivable, with hemorrhage being the leading, preventable, cause of death in the latter category. The ability to resuscitate a traumatic hemorrhagic soldier as fast as possible is crucial for survivability. Blood transfusion is vital to this resuscitation.

A critical requirement in any blood transfusion is to match the blood types of the donor and recipient to avoid fatal ABO incompatibilities. While A and B blood can only be donated to people of the same type, O type blood can be given to anyone without significant concerns of hemolytic reactions. This results in high demands on O type blood, often resulting in short supply. Ways of improving the supply of O type blood are urgently needed to address this problem.

Research objectives

This opportunity is aimed at improving supply of “universal” O type red blood cells for use in transfusion, especially in cases where the blood type of the recipient cannot be identified rapidly. The intent is to provide a method in which A or B type blood can be converted to O type blood. Any methodology developed for this purpose should be usable on the battlefield in “far forward” austere situations where advanced medical technologies or laboratory procedures may not be present.

See website for more information.

Funding Sources

Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC)

This opportunity was posted by: RGCS

Last modified: March 14, 2024