Research ArticleDiagnostics

A dye-assisted paper-based point-of-care assay for fast and reliable blood grouping

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Science Translational Medicine  15 Mar 2017:
Vol. 9, Issue 381, eaaf9209
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aaf9209

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Finding the right type

Blood type matching is important for pregnancy, blood transfusion, and bone marrow transplantation. Zhang et al. developed a blood typing assay based on the color change that occurs when a common pH indicator dye reacts with blood. Red blood cells (RBCs) and plasma were separated from small volumes of whole, uncentrifuged blood samples using antibodies immobilized on paper test strips. The assays performed forward grouping (detecting A and/or B antigens on RBCs) and reverse grouping (monitoring the agglutination between RBCs and anti-A and/or anti-B antibodies in plasma) within 2 min and could also perform Rhesus and rare blood typing. A machine-learning algorithm grouped human blood samples automatically on the basis of spectral analysis of the colorimetric assay readouts. This economical and robust assay is useful for time- and resource-limited environments.