What are plasma protein and related products

Plasma protein and related products are medications made from proteins in human plasma, or an alternative.

Alternative proteins and molecules are created in a laboratory. Through DNA technology, some human proteins are copied, and other molecules are designed to function like human proteins.

Medications made from these alternatives are called related products.

Whether a product is made from human plasma or an alternative, its purpose is the same: to help save or improve the quality of someone’s life.

Plasma protein products are made in six key steps

From start to finish, making plasma protein products is a rigorous multi-stepped process that can take upwards of nine months from the time plasma is collected from a donor. Learn more about the process step by step.

1

Collect

Plasma is collected from donors either by whole blood or plasma donation.

Icon of a yellow plasma bag with the outline of a blood droplet in the middle.

Plasma is collected from donors either by whole blood or plasma donation.

2

Test

Plasma is blood typed and tested for infectious agents, like HIV and hepatitis C. This ensures plasma donations used to help patients meet the highest safety and quality standards.  

Graphic icon of a yellow test tube beaker with a microscope beside it

Plasma is blood typed and tested for infectious agents, like HIV and hepatitis C. This ensures plasma donations used to help patients meet the highest safety and quality standards.  

3

Combine

Donations from thousands of plasma donors are pooled together in large holding tanks for processing.

Graphic icon of a plasma bag and a yellow plasma in the cylinder beside it.

Donations from thousands of plasma donors are pooled together in large holding tanks for processing.

4

Extract

Plasma is separated into different fractions and individual proteins, like immunoglobulin, and the proteins are removed. Each protein is the special ingredient needed to make one type of plasma protein product.   

Graphic icon of a test tube with layers showcasing the different levels of products during the extraction process

Plasma is separated into different fractions and individual proteins, like immunoglobulin, and the proteins are removed. Each protein is the special ingredient needed to make one type of plasma protein product.   

5

Purify and retest

Proteins are cleaned using light, heat, filtration and chemical treatments, as added safety measures to ensure proteins are purified and will not cause infection so that patients are protected. 

Graphic icon with an outline of a shield and a yellow blood droplet in the middle.

Proteins are cleaned using light, heat, filtration and chemical treatments, as added safety measures to ensure proteins are purified and will not cause infection so that patients are protected. 

6

Package

Pure and safe plasma protein products are packaged, labelled and ready for use by clinicians and patients. 

Graphic icon of a 3D box with a check mark at the bottom right hand corner of the box

Pure and safe plasma protein products are packaged, labelled and ready for use by clinicians and patients.