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Milestones in Hemophilia

An article on hemophilia by Jeanne M. Lusher, MD, and these accompanying milestones were published in December 2008 as part of the special ASH anniversary brochure, 50 Years in Hematology: Research That Revolutionized Patient Care.

1950s The use of fresh frozen plasma, which often required hospitalization, is the mainstay of treatment for hemophilia.
1964 Judith Pool discovers a simple way to make cryoprecipitates (cold insoluable precipitates that contain factor VIII) for the treatment of hemophilia.
1970s The availability of lyophilized (dried) factor VIII or factor IX concentrates allows home infusion therapy to become a common treatment practice.
1973 The Hemophilia Act of 1973 allows federally funded comprehensive hemophilia treatment centers to be established.
1982 Using gene sequencing techniques, researchers clone factor IX.
Using gene sequencing techniques, researchers clone factor VIII.
Luc Montagnier and Robert Gallo discover the virus that causes AIDS.
1980s The hepatitis viruses and HIV threaten the worldwide blood supply. To combat this, manufacturers of plasma-derived clotting factor concentrates attempt to kill the viruses with dry heat, solvent-detergent treatment, and pasteurization. Screening methods for these viruses, such as the ELISA test, are also developed.
1990s After only a few years years of successful clinical trials, recombinant human factor products become licensed and are available to hemophilia patients.
2000s Recent advances include a better understanding of the cause, detection, and elimination of inhibitor antibodies found in many hemophilia patients.