Blaze develops technologies that enable integrated and standardized testing of blood damage, particularly for red blood cells (RBC). The company’s principal product lines are its RBC Mechanical Fragilimeter™ systems for analyzing the mechanical fragility (MF) of red blood cells.  Initial models of these systems are directed to a wide range of industrial R&D and other research applications, while subsequent lines will target medical/clinical applications.

 

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Red blood cells (RBC) are amazing natural machines for delivering oxygen to tissue and sustaining life. Unfortunately, this vital blood component can be easily damaged by medical devices (such as dialyzers, LVADs, or catheters), by pharmaceuticals, by storage (for transfusion), or by disease.  In all these areas, the primary test for RBC damage is hemolysis – or cell rupture.  While very important, this fails to detect other mechanical damage (i.e., sub-hemolytic damage) that does not cause immediate cell rupture.  Such “hidden” damage nevertheless represents heightened susceptibility for future rupture, posing serious health hazards.

 

The mechanical fragility (MF) of RBC is recognized as the most sensitive indicator of mechanical damage.  Unfortunately, previous approaches to measuring it have been multi-step, lengthy, and lab-specific.  Blaze is providing the first commercial systems for convenient and comprehensive testing of this fundamental blood property.  Such technology can offer better hemocompatibility testing for developing various medical products that interact with blood, more-informed utilization of stored blood, and potentially new tests for diagnosing or monitoring anemias and other conditions.
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