Discovery Fit & Health
Artificial blood is a life-saving substance that carries oxygen to the body when there is a shortage of red blood cells. Artificial blood has properties that make it more versatile than real blood, including a long shelf life, no need for refrigeration and the ability to be sterilized. In addition, artificial blood does not need to be specifically matched for type.
While artificial blood does not perform all the functions of real blood, it carries out the necessary task of bringing oxygen to the cells.
The two most common types of artificial blood are HBOCs (hemoglobin-based oxygen carriers) and PFCs (perflourocarbons).
Both HBOCs and PFCs are considerably smaller than red blood cells. (2006 HowStuffWorks)
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