U.S. health regulators on Tuesday approved a device developed by Cerus to reduce the risk of infections in blood plasma transmitted during transfusions, such as HIV, hepatitis and West Nile virus, sending company shares 25 percent higher.
The Intercept Blood System for plasma uses ultraviolet light and a chemical called amotosalen that inactivates viral pathogens in the blood. The plasma is then purified to remove the chemical and its byproducts.
While the Intercept Blood System for plasma has been shown to be effective in reducing a broad range of viral and bacterial pathogens that may be transmitted through transfusions, there is no inactivation process that has been shown to eliminate all pathogens, the Food and Drug Administration said.
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