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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:George Washington University
  • Leon Grayfer
  • (202) 994-6255
Award Date:07/10/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 50,000
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 50,000
  • FY 2020=$50,000
Start Date:07/15/2020
End Date:12/31/2020
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.041
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:I-Corps: Genetically Enhanced Red Blood Cell Technology
Federal Award ID Number:2026076
DUNS ID:043990498
Parent DUNS ID:043990498
Program Officer:
  • Ruth Shuman
  • (703) 292-2160

Awardee Location

Street:1922 F Street NW
Awardee Cong. District:00

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:George Washington University
Street:800 22nd St. NW
Cong. District:00

Abstract at Time of Award

The broader impact/commercial potential of this I-Corps project is the development of a safer, reliably supplied, and cost-effective red blood cell product that may have the potential to address global blood scarcities, relieve many of the logistical challenges of the current donor blood supply chain, and decrease risk in transfusion medicine. Blood bank directors in the United States’ $2.6 billion red blood market face deep logistical challenges in maintaining the daily blood supply, managing comprehensive and intensive testing regiments, implementing new tests, and managing intra-hospital distribution. This technology will be created by genetically engineering human stem cells to promote their differentiation into mature red blood cells, within a laboratory environment. This would allow a theoretically limitless supply of red blood cells, independent of human donors, that could be made to be any blood type and created on demand. The proposed technology may impact public health by ensuring supply of red blood and reducing the risks associated with transfusions. This can also impact scientific research related to red blood cells. This I-Corps project explores translation of a scalable method for mass-producing an enhanced red blood cell product created through the use of novel genetic engineering techniques. The process of differentiating stem cells into erythrocytes in vitro is well established but has been shown to have several issues limiting translation, including the cost of production and cell culture expansion. Specific modifications to the stem cell genome and optimized manufacturing conditions may help promote wider dissemination of ex vivo red blood cell synthesis. This project will advance the development of specifically targeted genetic engineering techniques to enable higher cellular production rates and to induce controllable cellular states. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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