Donors needed for vital blood research

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A hunt is on in Sheffield to find more volunteers for a pioneering NHS project to find out how frequently people can give blood.

So far more than 2,300 blood donors in the city have joined the Interval study, which is asking people to give blood at different frequencies to find out if some people can safely donate more often than others.

But the Sheffield Donor Centre, off Church Street, needs around 965 further participants to help the study to reach a national target of 50,000 people.

The research is seeking to determine whether the length of time between blood donations can be tailored to suit people’s age, weight, diet and inherited factors and findings from the study are expected to emerge in 2016.

Lauren Botham, manager of the Sheffield Donor Centre, said: “So far, we have had a good response here in Sheffield. For years, many of our donors here – particularly the male ones – have told us they would give blood more often if they could.

“Now is their chance to potentially do so – some men taking part in the study will be randomly allocated to donate six times a year and some women four times per year.”