THE INCIDENCE of homologous serum jaundice after transfusions with pooled plasma is sufficiently high (5-15%) that many have abandoned its use save for the emergency treatment of shock. Although this decision is justified on the basis of clinical experience, it is regrettable that such a conclusion is necessary because we have available no other noncellular protein agent that is as effective in the treatment of shock or in the rapid restoration of the plasma protein concentration of the hypoproteinemia of malnutrition. Moreover, plasma or its fractions are the only portions of blood that can be stored indefinitely; hence the problem arises as to the disposition of plasma currently being collected as this applies to both military and civil defense.
The infectious agent responsible for homologous serum jaundice is considered to be a virus. Because only a small amount of an infected plasma is necessary to produce the disease, one unit