The technique for freezing, drying, and preserving in vacuo which is in common use for plasma can be successfully applied to hemoglobin solutions when the hemoglobin is first deoxygenated to the extent of 99.7 per cent or more.
In confirmation of Morrison and Hisey, the preliminary deoxygenation of the solution is found necessary to avoid formation of methemoglobin during drying. If a solution of oxyhemoglobin is frozen and dried, 20 to 30 per cent is changed to methemoglobin.
Deoxygnated hemoglobin dried and preserved in vacuo retained all its oxygenbinding activity for 180 days, when stored at temperatures from 4° to 30°C. Storage at 38°C. for 92 days, or at 56° for 7 days, caused no loss in activity. The dried hemoglobin had a foam structure which caused it to dissolve immediately upon contact with water.
Deoxygnated hemoglobin in the dry state was partly converted to methemoglobin by even momentary contact with oxygen. When, however, the deoxygnated hemoglobin was dissolved before it was exposed to air, the hemoglobin in solution was relatively stable, and could be stored for months at 4° in contact with air without significant loss of activity.