The science of blood transfusion has progressed beyond its earlier, necessary preoccupation with the safest means to pair donor blood with specific recipient. Increasingly selective compatibility testing revealed the existence of myriad red blood cell antigens and, in the years from the mid 1940's to the early 1960's, genetic and serologic investigations produced a dazzling array of systematized antigenic categories.
The Proceedings of 11th Congress of the International Society of Blood Transfusion reveal that emphasis has shifted from the red blood cell to the serum elements of blood, to white blood cells and platelets, and to histocompatibility antigens. For the front-bench blood banker, most of the news in these proceedings concerns automation and red blood cell preservation. The delay in publication has rendered this material less new, but it is still far from widespread practical application.
The sections on hemolytic disease of the newborn and fetal-maternal incompatibility show how basic