CONCORD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Cerus Corporation (NASDAQ:CERS) announced today that AABB has granted the first requests of U.S. blood centers and hospitals to use INTERCEPT pathogen reduction in place of irradiation to satisfy AABB's requirement to reduce the risk of transfusion-associated graft versus host disease (TA-GVHD).
Further, in letters received by Blood Bank of Delmarva, SunCoast Blood Bank, the National Institutes of Health and Community Blood Center, the AABB's Blood Bank and Transfusion Services Standards Program Unit (BBTS SPU) stated that, "[b]ased on the evaluation of relevant data and current use of the INTERCEPT Blood System for pathogen reduction, it is the intent of the BBTS SPU to propose an interim standard to the 29th edition allowing for the practice described." Issuance of the interim standard would obviate the need for blood centers and hospitals to request a variance to use the INTERCEPT Blood System for platelets in place of irradiation.
TA-GVHD is a condition in which donor T-cells mount an immune response against the transfusion recipient's lymphoid tissue. Immunocompromised recipients such as oncology patients may be unable to combat the donor’s T-cells, resulting in a potentially fatal disease. TA-GVHD has also been observed in some patients who are not immunocompromised.
AABB's Blood Bank and Transfusion Service standards are followed by most U.S. blood centers and major medical institutions, as well as a growing number of international blood centers. The standards require that patients identified as at risk for TA-GVHD must receive blood components which have been irradiated to inactivate T-cells. Variances allowing for the substitution of INTERCEPT in place of irradiation were approved after submission of data dossiers containing efficacy, safety and hemovigilance data for Standard Program Unit's review. Internationally, the first variances for replacement of irradiation were issued in 2013 to AABB-accredited blood centers in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia upon implementation of the INTERCEPT Blood System.
Cerus Corporation is a biomedical products company focused in the field of blood transfusion safety. The INTERCEPT Blood System is designed to reduce the risk of transfusion-transmitted infections by inactivating a broad range of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria and parasites that may be present in donated blood. The nucleic acid targeting mechanism of action of the INTERCEPT treatment is designed to inactivate established transfusion threats, such as Hepatitis B and C, HIV, West Nile Virus and bacteria, as well as emerging pathogens such as chikungunya, malaria and dengue. Cerus currently markets and sells the INTERCEPT Blood System for both platelets and plasma in the United States, Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Middle East and selected countries in other regions around the world. The INTERCEPT red blood cell system is in clinical development. See www.cerus.com for information about Cerus.
INTERCEPT and the INTERCEPT Blood System are trademarks of Cerus Corporation.
Stacey Leanos - Associate Director, Investor & Public Relations
Lainie Corten - Vice President, Global Marketing & Investor Relations