Book Chapter

Who Is My Donor? A New Bioeconomy of Blood and Its Changing Ontology



King E (2017) Who Is My Donor? A New Bioeconomy of Blood and Its Changing Ontology. In: Pavone V & Goven J (eds.) Bioeconomies: Life. Technology, and Capital in the 21st Century. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 303-323.;

The Novosang project is developing a process for growing cultured red blood cells (cRBCs) in the laboratory from stem cells for the purpose of transfusion. King draws on interviews and focus groups to discuss public attitudes in relation to the changing bioeconomy around blood products, especially in light of the changing ontology of blood as it moves from an altruistic donation model to a commercialized one. The altruistic donation system in the UK appears to mask the true costs associated with procuring and delivering RBC transfusions. Participants desire cRBCs to retain the same ontology as donated RBCs in being distributed by the NHS or research funders rather than commercial producers; however, participants construct a commercial imperative for cRBCs.

Publication date31/12/2017
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Publisher URL
Place of publicationLondon

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Dr Emma King
Dr Emma King

Health Services Researcher, NMAHP