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Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) Affects Over 20M Worldwide, including 100K Americans1,2

LEXINGTON, MA and SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Jul 28, 2021 – Hemanext Inc. a privately held, US-based medical technology company dedicated to improving the quality, safety, efficacy, and cost of red blood cell (RBC) transfusions, has partnered with Sickle Cell 101 (SC101), a Silicon Valley-based non-profit, to sponsor and promote sickle cell disease (SCD) education.

Hemanext’s partnership with SC101 reflects its commitment to the SCD community. Hemanext will work with SC101 to help support the community through local, national, and global awareness initiatives that call attention to the unmet needs of people with SCD.

“It is a privilege to partner with Sickle Cell 101 and in support of their global mission of promoting patient awareness and education for sickle cell disease,” said Alex Marichal, VP of Marketing at Hemanext. “SC101’s evidence-based, patient-friendly programs and communications enhance the lives of sickle cell patients, which is why Hemanext is committed to supporting this alliance.”

“We’re very excited to be working with a world-class medical technology company like Hemanext that is dedicated to improving blood transfusions,” said Cassandra Trimnell, founder, and Executive Director of Sickle Cell 101. “We are optimistic that Hemanext’s expertise in blood collection, processing, and storage will result in transfusion technologies that could potentially impact the lives of millions of patients, including people living with sickle cell disease.”

About Sickle Cell Disease (SCD)
Sickle cell disease (SCD) is among the most common inherited blood disorders.3 It is a lifelong illness that affects millions of people throughout the world and is particularly common among those whose ancestors came from Africa, South America, the Caribbean, and Central America.1 It is estimated that nearly 5% of the world’s population are carriers for the trait gene.4

More than 20 million people worldwide suffer from SCD2 with more than another 300,000 births globally each year.8 About 100,000 Americans live with SCD.1,2 African Americans are the group most often affected by the disease – with one out of 365 Americans of African ancestry born with SCD.1

SCD causes the red blood cells to become hard and sticky and look like a C-shaped farm tool called a “sickle.”10 As an inherited disorder, it passes from parent to child. When a child receives two sickle cell genes—one from each parent—they have SCD. The CDC estimates about 1 in 13 Americans of African ancestry carry the gene that causes the disease.1

Sickle Cell Disease is a progressively debilitating disease characterized by unpredictable, acute, and potentially life-threatening complications such as strokes and acute chest syndrome.6 Studies have shown that the average life expectancy of a person living with SCD is only between 40 to 50 years.8 During the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a significant impact on the SCD community.7 Early on, the CDC found that people living with SCD-related complications were at much higher risk for COVID-19-related complications and death.8 The pandemic has also had an impact on the blood supply in geographies where donations are reduced.9

About SC101
Sickle Cell 101 (SC101) is a Silicon Valley-based non-profit organization that specializes in sickle cell education. SC101 is the largest global online platform dedicated solely to sickle cell disease and sickle cell trait research and education. Over the years SC101’s global and world-renowned platforms have become reliable sources of information trusted by patients, caregivers, healthcare providers, and other stakeholders. Our work is dedicated to providing evidence-based, patient-friendly content to the sickle cell community. Visit sc101.org to learn more.

About Hemanext
Hemanext is a privately held medical technology company dedicated to improving the quality, safety, efficacy, and cost of transfusion therapy. Our research and development efforts center on hypoxically stored red blood cells (RBCs). Visit hemanext.com to learn more.

Media Contacts:

Cassandra Trimnell
Executive Director, Sickle Cell 101
info@sc101.org

Stacy Smith
Associate Director of Marketing Communications, Hemanext
stacy.smith@hemanext.com

References:

1. Center of Disease Control. “Sickle Cell Data.” https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/sicklecell/data.html. Accessed June 2021.
2. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, NIH.” Cure Sickle Cell Initiative”, https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/science/cure-sickle-cell-initiative . Accessed June 2021.
3. Center of Disease Control. “About CDC’s Work on Sickle Cell Disease.” https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/sicklecell/about.html . Accessed June 2021.
4. Dexter et al. Mitigating the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on sickle cell disease services in African countries Lancet Haematol. 2020 Jun; 7(6): e430–e432.
5. Kato, G. et al. Nat Rev Dis Primers. 2018 Mar 15; 4:18010. doi: 10.1038/nrdp.2018.10. PMID: 29542687.
6. Howard J. et al. Hematology Am Soc Hematol Educ Program. 2016;(1):625- 631. doi:10.1182/asheducation-2016.1.625
7. Panepinto et al. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2020;26(10):2473-2476. doi:10.3201/eid2610.202792.
8. Neumayr, L et al. Am J Mang Care. 2019;25:S335-S343. http://ajmc.s3.amazonaws.com/_media/_pdf/AJMC_A924_Article.pdf
9. Guidance on maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and on the collection of COVID-19 convalescent plasma, Interim Guidance, WHO, 10 July 2020. https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/333182/WHO-2019-nCoV-BloodSupply-2020.2-eng.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y. Accessed June 2021.
10. NIH, Sickle Cell Disease, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/sickle-cell-disease . Accessed June 2021.

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