Asian Journal of Transfusion Science
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
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A study to identify severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 in erythrocytes of patients suffering from coronavirus disease-19 at an Apex tertiary care institute in Andhra Pradesh, South India


1 Department of Transfusion Medicine and Hemotherapy, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh, India
2 Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh, India
3 Department of Anaesthesiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
I. S. Chaitanya Kumar,
Department of Transfusion Medicine and Hemotherapy, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ajts.ajts_98_21

CONTEXT: Coronavirus (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 [SARS-CoV-2]) in the latest coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has been shown to cause a rise of ferritin levels through a possible viremia. Hemoglobin in the erythrocyte (red blood cell [RBC]) is a potential source of ferritin and we hypothesized that erythrocyte might be infected by this virus. Any infected RBC in asymptomatic blood donors might become a huge threat to the blood. AIM: The aim of the study is to identify the presence of SARS-CoV-2 ribonucleic Acid (RNA) in RBC of patients suffering from COVID-19 disease. SETTING AND DESIGN: A prospective study was performed to identify the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in erythrocytes of patients with COVID-19. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Ten samples were collected from patients with COVID-19 at different times during their admission. After sampling, these were processed and stored like Packed red blood cells (PRBCs). These units were further processed by washing or leukoreduction with further sampling. All these samples were tested for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA by real-time-polymerase chain reaction. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: Descriptive statistics with Microsoft Excel were performed. RESULTS: The study could not identify the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the erythrocytes or plasma of infected patients. CONCLUSION: SARS-CoV-2 virus may not be a transfusion transmissible infection, however, this needs to be confirmed with a larger study. It is recommended to have a lookout hemovigilance policy given newer variants of SARS-CoV-2 and for possible new viruses that may emerge in the future.


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    -  Kumar IS
    -  Babu MV
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2006 - Asian Journal of Transfusion Science | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 10th November, 2006