To identify the occurrence and the causes of platelet refractoriness in oncohematologic patients.
Platelet refractoriness (unsatisfactory post-transfusion platelet increment) is a severe problem that impairs the treatment of oncohematologic patients and is not routinely investigated in most Brazilian services.
Forty-four episodes of platelet concentrate transfusion were evaluated in 16 patients according to the following parameters: corrected count increment, clinical conditions and detection of anti-platelet antibodies by the platelet immunofluorescence test (PIFT) and panel reactive antibodies against human leukocyte antigen class I (PRA-HLA).
Of the 16 patients evaluated (median age: 53 years), nine (56%) were women, seven of them with a history of pregnancy. An unsatisfactory increment was observed in 43% of the transfusion events, being more frequent in transfusions of random platelet concentrates (54%). Platelet refractoriness was confirmed in three patients (19%), who presented immunologic and non-immunologic causes. Alloantibodies were identified in eight patients (50%) by the PIFT and in three (19%) by the PRA-HLA. Among alloimmunized patients, nine (64%) had a history of transfusion, and three as a result of pregnancy (43%). Of the former, two were refractory (29%). No significant differences were observed, probably as a result of the small sample size.
The high rate of unsatisfactory platelet increment, refractoriness and alloimmunization observed support the need to set up protocols for the investigation of this complication in all chronically transfused patients, a fundamental requirement for the guarantee of adequate management.
Transfusion; CCI; Alloimmunization; PIFT; HLA
Immune platelet refractoriness is mainly caused by human leukocyte antigen
antibodies (80-90% of cases) and, to a lesser extent, by human platelet antigen
antibodies. Refractoriness can be diagnosed by laboratory tests and patients
should receive compatible platelet transfusions. A fast, effective and low cost
antibody-screening method which detects platelet human leukocyte/platelet antigen
antibodies is essential in the management of immune platelet refractoriness.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficiency of the flow cytometry
platelet immunofluorescence test to screen for immune platelet refractoriness.
A group of prospective hematologic patients with clinically suspected platelet
refractoriness treated in a referral center in Campinas, SP during July 2006 and
July 2011 was enrolled in this study. Platelet antibodies were screened using the
flow cytometry platelet immunofluorescence test. Anti-human leukocyte antigen
antibodies were detected by commercially available methods. The sensitivity,
specificity and predictive values of the immunofluorescence test were determined
taking into account that the majority of antiplatelet antibodies presented human
leukocyte antigen specificity.
Seventy-six samples from 32 female and 38 male patients with a median age of 43.5
years (range: 5-84 years) were analyzed. The sensitivity of the test was 86.11%
and specificity 75.00% with a positive predictive value of 75.61% and a negative
predictive value of 85.71%. The accuracy of the method was 80.26%.
This study shows that the flow cytometry platelet immunofluorescence test has a
high correlation with the anti-human leukocyte antigen antibodies. Despite a few
limitations, the method seems to be efficient, fast and feasible as the initial
screening for platelet antibody detection and a useful tool to crossmatch
platelets for the transfusional support of patients with immune platelet
Blood platelets; Antigens, human leukocyte; Flow cytometry; Histocompatibility; Antigens, human platelet
In thirty patients with acute leukemia and severe aplastic anemia receiving random single donor platelet transfusions, the development of refractoriness by consecutive platelet transfusions with cytapheresis and its relationship to the appearance of anti-platelet antibodies were investigated. The median number of platelet transfusions inducing refractoriness was 13 times, and 20% of the patients remained unrefractory despite of the repeated multiple platelet transfusions up to 20 to 25 times. The results of anti-platelet antibody tasts by the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay(ELISA) and immunofluorescent techniques(IFT) showed no statistically significant relationship with the refractoriness (p greater than 0.1). Although there was significant correlation between the results of ELISA and IFT, both tests were insufficient to find out refractoriness even with the use of pooled platelets from multiple donors as target cells. This study shows that 13 single donor platelet transfusions result in refractoriness, that both ELISA and IFT are insufficient to detect refractoriness despite of their significant correlation, and that other methods than these are needed in order to detect alloimmunization.
AML patients undergoing induction chemotherapy have significant decreases in alloimmune platelet refractoriness if they receive filter-leukoreduced or UV-B irradiated versus standard platelet transfusions (3% to 5% versus 13%, respectively, p≤0.03) with no differences among the treated platelet arms (TRAP Trial). Therefore, measuring antibody persistence might identify the best platelets for transfusion. Lymphocytotoxic (LCT) antibody duration was evaluated for association with patient age, sex, prior transfusion and pregnancy history, study assigned platelet transfusions, and percent LCT panel reactive antibodies (PRA). During the TRAP trial, 145 patients became antibody-positive, and 81 (56%) of them subsequently became antibody-negative. Using Kaplan-Meier estimates, projected antibody loss was 73% at one year. Major factors associated with antibody persistence were prior pregnancy and percent PRA positivity, while neither the assigned type of platelets transfused during the 8 weeks of the trial nor prior transfusion history were predictive. After 5 to 8 weeks, the number and type of blood products transfused had no effect on either antibody development or loss. A majority of AML patients who develop LCT antibodies during induction chemotherapy will lose their antibodies within 4 months regardless of the type or number of blood products they receive.
Platelet Transfusions; UV-B Irradiation; Leukoreduction; Platelet Refractoriness; Platelet Alloimmunization; Lymphocytotoxic Antibodies
Glanzmann’s thrombasthenia (GT) is a congenital qualitative platelet disorders due to the deficiency or defect of platelet membrane GPIIb/IIIa (integrin αIIbβ3). The standard treatment for bleeding is platelet transfusion but repeated transfusion may result in the development of anti-platelet antibodies (to HLA and/or GPIIbIIIa) rendering future platelet transfusion ineffective. Alternative effective agent(s) are needed. There are increasing reports documenting efficacy of high dose rFVIIa in GT patients with adverse events uncommon. The efficacy is supported by evidence that high concentration FVIIa binds to activated platelet surface and improves thrombin generation to enhance deposition (adhesion) and aggregation of platelets lacking GPIIb/IIIa. While there are increasing clinical experiences, evidence-based clinical data are not available. There is a need for more clinical studies, particularly clinical trials, to further assess the efficacy, safety (particularly thrombotic events) and optimal regimen of rFVIIa in GT patients, either singly or in combination with other hemostatic agents such as platelet transfusion. In the absence of this data, for treatment of severe bleeding in GT patients with platelet antibodies and platelet refractoriness, rFVIIa at dose 90 μg/kg every 2 h for 3 or more doses could be considered. This more “optimal regimen” derived from a recent International Survey needs confirmation with larger studies. What the optimal regimen for surgical coverage is remains unresolved.
Glanzmann’s thrombasthenia; recombinant human activated factor VII (rFVIIa); bleeding; surgery; platelet transfusion; GPIIb/IIIa
Platelet refractoriness is caused by HLA antibodies and platelet-specific antibodies. Current methods used to detect antiplatelet antibodies have limitations. Solid phase red cell adherence (SPRCA) lacks sensitivity and requires a second assay using chloroquine-treated intact platelets to specify the response due to anti-HLA. We modified SPRCA by using 2 types of antihuman platelet antibodies with different specificities toward platelet lysate and tested samples from 361 patients (69 with unexplained thrombocytopenia and 292 with poor response to platelet transfusions not explicable by alloimmunization or the clinical situation) and 50 from healthy volunteers. Our method compared favorably with platelet suspension direct immunofluorescence. All samples from healthy volunteers were negative; of the samples from the patient population, 240 were positive (147 samples had only antiplatelet and 3 samples had only anti-HLA antibodies). This modified technique had a sensitivity of 98% and a specificity of 91%.
Solid phase red cell adherence; Thrombocytopenia; Platelet alloantibodies; Platelet transfusion; Platelet refractoriness
The technique of platelet aggregometry provides a simple, quantitative, and specific method for the detection of drug-dependent and isoimmune antiplatelet antibodies. In the presence of antiquinidine antibody, quinidine causes lysis of normal platelets in platelet-rich plasma. The resulting changes in optical density are readily detected in the aggregometer. The initial rate of lysis is a function of the antibody titer, but is relatively independent of the platelet count. In vitro, quinidine produces platelet swelling and inhibits aggregation of platelets by adenosine diphosphate, epinephrine, and collagen. Isoimmune antibodies cause aggregation of platelets in platelet-rich plasma. In studies of a single family the rate of aggregation is proportional to the number of HL-A antigens present on the normal platelets against which the antibody is directed. The simple technique of platelet aggregometry may be a useful adjunct in the selection of compatible donors for platelet transfusion. Serum derived from patients with idiopathic thromboytopenic purpura did not cause platelet aggregation.
Alloantibodies are a clinically significant sequelae of platelet transfusion, potentially rendering patients refractory to ongoing platelet transfusion support. These antibodies are often IgG class switched, suggesting the involvement of CD4+ T cell help; however, platelet specific CD4+ T cells have not been visualized in vivo and specifics of their stimulation are not completely understood.
Study Design and Methods
A murine model of alloimmunization to transfused platelets was developed to allow in vivo assessment and characterization of CD4+ T cells specific for platelet MHC alloantigen. Platelets were harvested from BALB/c mice, filter leukoreduced, and transfused into C57BL/6 recipients. Platelet specific CD4+ T cell responses were visualized by using a TCR transgenic mouse that detects peptide from donor MHC I presented on recipient MHC II. Antibody responses were determined by indirect immunofluorescence using BALB/c donor targets.
C57BL/6 recipients of BALB/c leukoreduced platelet transfusions produced anti-BALB/c antibodies, with proliferation of antigen specific CD4+ T cells seen in the spleen but not lymph nodes or liver. Depletion of recipient CD4+ cells or splenectomy independently abrogated the alloantibody response.
We report a novel model to study antigen-specific CD4+ T cells during alloimmunization to platelet transfusion. The presented data support a critical role for CD4+ T cell help in the humoral response to platelet transfusion and establish the spleen as a required microenvironment for effective CD4+ T cell priming against donor platelet derived MHC I.
Antiplatelet antibodies are known to be present in a wide spectrum of patients, which include chronic Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), infections, etc., including Glanzmann's thrombasthenia (GT) patients who receive multiple platelet transfusions. The presence of natural antibodies to platelet receptors is not studied in cases of GT. We studied the antiplatelet antibodies in 23 patients with GT, 15 of which had received multiple transfusions and eight that had not received transfusions, along with 50 cases of chronic ITP. The prevalence and specificity of platelet-bound antibodies were detected by inhibition assays using O-group platelets on flow cytometry. The mean antiplatelet antibodies in 15 patients of GT who had not received transfusions and eight patients with multiple transfusions was 8427 + 2131.88 and 9038 + 2856 antibodies/platelet, respectively, while in case of the 50 ITP patients studied, it was 22166 + 5616 antibodies/platelet (Normal Range 1500–3200 antibodies/platelet). We conclude that GT patients who have not received transfusions may develop antiplatelet antibodies to the missing/abnormal receptor. Whether this is due to a molecular mimicry or due to some other mechanism needs to be explored.
Antiplatelet antibodies; Glanzmann's Thrombasthenia; Flow cytometry
To study the antibody response to human platelet transfusions, nine thrombocytopenia patients with bone marrow failure were given 6 U (3X10(11)) of random platelet concentrates twice a week. Before transfusion, none of the patients had preexisting antibodies detectable with lymphocytotoxicity, platelet aggregation, or capillary leukoagglutination techniques. After receiving 18-78 U of platelets, they became refractory to further transfusions of random platelets and alloantibodies were detectable. Two patterns of antibody response could be identified. In three patients, the sera were not lymphocytotoxic with a panel of standard cells in which all the known HLA antigens in the first and second series were represented at least once. Yet, they caused platelet aggregation with 30, 24, and 60%, respectively, of a donor population studied. The aggregating activities were inhibited by antihuman IgG but not by antihuman IgA or antihuman IgM antiserum. The aggregating antibodies could be absorbed out with donor platelets but not lymphocytes or granulocytes. Antibodies from two of these patients aggregated platelets of their respective siblings matched for both HLA haplotypes. Transfusion of platelets from these two siblings did not increase the platelet count while platelets obtained from aggregation-negative donors did. The sera from the remaining six patients were lymphocytotoxic with 15-100% of the panel of standard cells. They also had aggregating antibodies, which could be absorbed out by both platelets and lymphocytes, suggesting that they were HLA antibodies. These data suggest that the development of platelet-specific antibodies may play an important role in the immunological rejection of isologous platelets, and should be considered in the selection of donors for patients who are refractory to platelets from random donors.
Since platelets possess A and B antigen, mismatched ABO platelets could, theoretically, become activated or hypofunctional by exposure to anti-A or anti-B antibodies found in transfused or recipient plasma. Following normal baseline platelet aggregation to adenosine diphosphate (ADP), platelets from normal donors of different blood types were incubated at 37°C for 10 minutes with 50μl of normal saline (NS), O plasma, or AB plasma. Aggregation was then induced with ADP. No significant changes from baseline were seen in platelet aggregation studies following incubation with NS. However, platelet aggregations of type A and type B platelets were significantly inhibited when incubated with O plasma (mean of 41 and 22%, respectively). Our findings indicate that mediators in group O plasma, very likely anti-A and anti-B antibodies, cause impaired platelet aggregation of ABO non-identical platelets.
Platelet transfusion; platelet aggregation; blood transfusion; transfusion medicine; transfusion complications; ABO blood group; anti-ABO antibodies; platelet function
The overall risk of hemolytic transfusion reactions from plasma (minor) incompatible platelet transfusions and the role of a critical anti-A or anti-B titer in predicting/preventing these reactions has not been clearly established.
We evaluated all apheresis platelet (AP) transfusions for three months. Using the gel titer method, we determined the anti-A and/or the anti-B IgG titer for all incompatible APs. Reported febrile transfusion reactions and hemolytic transfusion reactions (HTRs) were recorded; transfusions were not prospectively evaluated by the study team. A post-transfusion DAT and eluate were performed after a reported febrile or hemolytic reaction for patients who received plasma incompatible APs.
647of 4,288 AP transfusions (15.1%) were plasma incompatible. Group O APs (N = 278) had significantly higher anti-A and anti-B titers than group A or B APs (p<0.0001). No group A or B APs had a titer >128 (0/342). For group O APs, 73 had titers ≥256 (26.3%), and 27 had titers ≥512 (9.7%). No HTRs were reported to any plasma incompatible AP transfusion during the study period. Two plasma incompatible AP transfusions were associated with fever/chills and positive DATs, of which one had a positive eluate. The incidence of a DAT and eluate positive febrile transfusion reaction in the plasma incompatible AP population is 0.15% (95% CI 0.0–0.86%).
A critical anti-A or B titer is not sufficient to predict the risk of hemolysis in patients receiving plasma incompatible APs, although underreporting of reactions to the blood bank may limit the generalizability of this study.
platelet; apheresis; ABO; antibody titer; transfusion; incompatible; febrile transfusion reaction; hemolysis
We describe a new variant of Glanzmann's thrombasthenia (variant Strasbourg I). The patient (M.S.) showed an absence of platelet aggregation to ADP, thrombin, and collagen, and a decreased clot retraction. Platelet fibrinogen was approximately 20% of normal levels. ADP-stimulated platelets bound markedly reduced amounts of soluble fibrinogen and platelet adhesion to surface-bound fibrinogen was defective. Normal to subnormal amounts of glycoprotein (GP) IIb-IIIa (alpha IIb beta 3) complexes, the platelet fibrinogen receptor, were revealed by SDS-PAGE, crossed immunoelectrophoresis, and antibody binding. However, the complexes were unusually sensitive to dissociation with EDTA at room temperature. Furthermore, flow cytometry showed that the platelets failed to bind the activation-dependent monoclonal antibody, PAC-1, after stimulation. In contrast, an RGDS-containing peptide induced significant binding of the anti-ligand-induced binding site antibody, D3GP3, suggesting the presence of a functional RGD binding domain on the patient's GPIIb-IIIa complex. Sequence analysis was performed after polymerase chain reaction amplification of selected patient's GPIIIa exons, and of the patient's platelet GPIIb and GPIIIa mRNAs. A point mutation (C to T) was localized in exon D (iv) of GPIIIa that resulted in an 214Arg to 214Trp amino acid substitution. The defect has been inherited from the parents who are heterozygous for the same mutation. This substitution points to an essential amino acid in a region of GPIIIa involved in the binding of fibrinogen and influencing the Ca(2+)-dependent stability of the GPIIb-IIIa complex.
Public awareness has long focused on the risks of the transmission of viral agents through blood product transfusion. This risk, however, pales in comparison to the less publicized danger associated with the transfusion of blood products contaminated with bacteria, in particular, platelet concentrates. Up to 1,000 cases of clinical sepsis after the transfusion of platelet concentrates are reported annually in the United States. The condition is characterized by acute reaction symptoms and the rapid onset of septicemia and carries a 20 to 40% mortality rate. The urgent need for a method for the routine screening of platelet concentrates to improve patient safety has long been recognized. We describe the development of a rapid and highly sensitive method for screening for bacteria in platelet concentrates for transfusion. No culture period is required; and the entire procedure, from the time of sampling to the time that the final result is obtained, takes less than 90 min. The method involves three basic stages: the selective removal of platelets by filtration following activation with a monoclonal antibody, DNA-specific fluorescent labeling of bacteria, and concentration of the bacteria on a membrane surface for enumeration by solid-phase cytometry. The method offers a universal means of detection of live, nondividing, or dead gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria in complex cellular blood products. The sensitivity is higher than those of the culture-based methods available at present, with a detection limit of 10 to 102 CFU/ml, depending upon the bacterial strain.
Aims—To investigate in vitro the effect of amphotericin B on platelets in order to understand poor platelet recovery in patients receiving platelet transfusions and amphotericin B simultaneously.
Methods—Washed platelets were isolated from platelet concentrates and exposed to amphotericin B (4 μg/ml) for one hour. Platelet function was assessed by aggregation response to thrombin (0-0.6 U/ml), serotonin release, response to hypotonic stress, and mean platelet volume. The expression of surface membrane glycoprotein (GP) Ib-IX complex, GPIIb-IIIa complex and CD62P (P-selectin) was examined by flow cytometry using fluorescence labelled monoclonal antibodies. Heterotypic cell adhesion was measured in amphotericin B treated platelets coincubated with isolated, autologous polymorphonuclear leucocytes (PMN) by flow cytometric analysis.
Results—Amphotericin B induced platelet dysfunction. The rate of aggregation by thrombin, serotonin uptake and thrombin induced release of serotonin, and the response of platelets to hypotonic stress were inhibited. There was up to a two-fold increase in the mean platelet volume. The expression of platelet surface GPIb-IX and GPIIb-IIIa was not affected. P-selectin, normally expressed only on the surface of activated platelets, was also expressed on unactivated platelets. Amphotericin B increased platelet adherence to PMN and the number of platelets bound per PMN.
Conclusions—In vitro, amphotericin B induces P-selectin expression on the surface of unactivated platelets and increases platelet adhesion to PMN, which is exacerbated by storage. Platelet dysfunction resulting from exposure to amphotericin B may contribute to poor platelet recovery in vivo when amphotericin B is administered concomitantly with platelet transfusion.
amphotericin B; platelets; surface membrane glycoprotein; flow cytometry
Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI) is a noncardiogenic pulmonary edema that occurs during or within 6 hours after transfusion. Risk factors for TRALI, which is relatively common in critically ill patients, include recent surgery, hematologic malignancy, and sepsis. Here, we report a case of TRALI induced by anti-human leukocyte antigen (anti-HLA) class II antibodies (HLA-DR) occurring after transfusion of platelet concentrates in a patient with acute leukemia. Although most patients with TRALI show improvement within 48-96 hours, our patient's condition rapidly worsened, and he did not respond to supportive treatment. TRALI is a relatively common and serious adverse transfusion reaction that requires prompt diagnosis and management.
Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI); Transfusion; Anti-human leukocyte antigen (anti-HLA) antibody
We conducted a trial of prophylactic platelet transfusions to evaluate the effect of platelet dose on bleeding in patients with hypoproliferative thrombocytopenia.
We randomly assigned hospitalized patients undergoing hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation or chemotherapy for hematologic cancers or solid tumors to receive prophylactic platelet transfusions at a low dose, a medium dose, or a high dose (1.1×1011, 2.2×1011, or 4.4×1011 platelets per square meter of body-surface area, respectively), when morning platelet counts were 10,000 per cubic millimeter or lower. Clinical signs of bleeding were assessed daily. The primary end point was bleeding of grade 2 or higher (as defined on the basis of World Health Organization criteria).
In the 1272 patients who received at least one platelet transfusion, the primary end point was observed in 71%, 69%, and 70% of the patients in the low-dose group, the medium-dose group, and the high-dose group, respectively (differences were not significant). The incidences of higher grades of bleeding, and other adverse events, were similar among the three groups. The median number of platelets transfused was significantly lower in the low-dose group (9.25×1011) than in the medium-dose group (11.25×1011) or the high-dose group (19.63×1011) (P = 0.002 for low vs. medium, P<0.001 for high vs. low and high vs. medium), but the median number of platelet transfusions given was significantly higher in the low-dose group (five, vs. three in the medium-dose and three in the high-dose group; P<0.001 for low vs. medium and low vs. high). Bleeding occurred on 25% of the study days on which morning platelet counts were 5000 per cubic millimeter or lower, as compared with 17% of study days on which platelet counts were 6000 to 80,000 per cubic millimeter (P<0.001).
Low doses of platelets administered as a prophylactic transfusion led to a decreased number of platelets transfused per patient but an increased number of transfusions given. At doses between 1.1×1011 and 4.4×1011 platelets per square meter, the number of platelets in the prophylactic transfusion had no effect on the incidence of bleeding. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00128713.)
The -D- phenotype is a rare Rh phenotype that strongly expresses D antigen without C, c, E, or e antigens. In -D- phenotype individuals, anti-Rh17 (Hro) is commonly found if there is a history of pregnancy or transfusion with red blood cells (RBCs) that express C, c, E, or e antigens. We report the first case of a -D- phenotype patient with multiple Rh antibodies including anti-Rh17 who had a history of two occasions of transfusion with eight random donor platelet concentrates two and six years ago. We found that a trivial amount of RBCs in the platelet components was able to trigger sensitization to RBC antigens, especially the highly immunogenic and clinically significant Rh antigens, including C, c, E, e or CcEe polypeptides. To avoid unnecessary sensitization and to minimize the risk of hemolytic transfusion reactions in patients with this rare Rh phenotype, a modified strategy for pretransfusion screenings needs to be discussed in the field of transfusion medicine.
Rh-Hr blood group system; Rh isoimmunization; Platelet transfusion
Allergic reactions occur commonly in transfusion practice. However, severe anaphylactic reactions are rare; anti-IgA (IgA: Immunoglobulin A) in IgA-deficient patients is one of the well-illustrated and reported causes for such reactions. However, IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reaction through blood component transfusion may be caused in parasitic hyperimmunization for IgG and IgE antibodies.
We have evaluated here a severe anaphylactic transfusion reaction retrospectively in an 18year-old male, a known case of cerebral malaria, developed after platelet transfusions. The examination and investigations revealed classical signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis along with a significant rise in the serum IgE antibody level and IgG by hemagglutination method. Initial mild allergic reaction was followed by severe anaphylactic reaction after the second transfusion of platelets.
Based on these results, screening of patients and donors with mild allergic reactions to IgE antibodies may help in understanding the pathogenesis as well as in planning for preventive desensitization and measures for safe transfusion.
Anaphylactic transfusion reaction; IgE mediated allergic transfusion reaction; investigation of transfusion reaction; platelet transfusion reactions
Platelets are specialized cells produced by megakaryocytes in the bone marrow that represent the first defense against hemorrhage, yet they also play a pathological role in thrombosis, inflammation, and cancer. Millions of platelet transfusions are conducted each year, and the supply of this blood component is limited. There are many diseases where platelet production or function is impaired with severe consequences for patients. With such clinical need, new insight into the formation of platelets would have a major impact on patients and healthcare. We developed an innovative 3D system to study platelet production that represents the first spatial reconstruction of the bone marrow environment. In this system human megakaryocytes were able to migrate toward the vascular niche, extend proplatelets, and release functional platelets into vascular tubes. The combination of different bone marrow components and the compliance of silk-based vascular tubes makes this model a unique tool for the study of platelet formation and production for use in healthcare needs.
Few treatments are available that can safely and effectively stimulate new platelet production for thrombocytopenic patients. Additionally, recipients of transfused platelets may experience an inflammatory response due to stored platelets becoming unnecessarily activated, thus creating the need for suitable agents that will dampen undesirable platelet activation. We investigated the effect of the feverfew plant-derived compound, parthenolide on platelet production and platelet activation because of its well-studied ability to induce apoptosis or differentiation in some types of cancer.
Parthenolide was used to treat human megakaryoblastic cell lines, primary human and mouse megakaryocytes. Resulting platelet production and function was measured via flow cytometry. The two most common parthenolide signaling mechanisms, oxidative stress and nuclear factor-κB inhibition, were assessed within the megakaryocytes using reactive oxygen species, glutathione and luciferase reporter assays. The influence of parthenolide on ex vivo platelet activation was tested with parthenolide pretreatment followed by collagen or thrombin activation. The resulting P-selectin surface expression and released soluble CD40 ligand was measured.
Parthenolide stimulates functional platelet production from human megakaryocyte cell lines, and from primary mouse and human megakaryocytes in vitro. Parthenolide enhances platelet production via inhibition of nuclear factor-κB signaling in megakaryocytes and is independent of the parthenolide-induced oxidative stress response. Additionally, parthenolide treatment of human peripheral blood platelets attenuated activation of stimulated platelets.
Overall, these data reveal that parthenolide has strong potential as a candidate to enhance platelet production and to dampen undesirable platelet activation.
thrombopoiesis; parthenolide; platelet activation
Generation of alloantibodies to transfused RBCs can be a serious medical problem for patients who require chronic RBC transfusion therapy. Patients with sickle cell disease have a substantially increased rate of alloimmunization compared to other chronically transfused populations. A recent study has forwarded the hypothesis that a polymorphism in an immunoregulatory gene in close proximity to beta-globin (TRIM21 rs660) plays a role in the increased rates of RBC alloimmunization in sickle cell patients. In particular, it was hypothesized that rs660C/T decreases expression of TRIM21, resulting in loss of a negative feedback pathway in immune responses and increased RBC alloimmunization. To test the effects of TRIM21 expression on alloimmunization, we analyzed antibody responses to alloantigens on RBCs and platelets transfused into wild-type and TRIM21 KO mice. No significant increases were seen in the frequency or magnitude of humoral immunization to alloantigens on transfused RBCs or platelets in adult or juvenile TRIM 21 KO recipients compared to wild-type controls. Moreover, recipient inflammation with poly (I:C) enhanced RBC alloimmunization to similar degrees in both TRIM 21 KO and wild-type control recipients. Together, these data rule out the hypothesis that decreased TRIM 21 expression enhances transfusion induced humoral alloimmunization, in the context of a reductionist murine model.
Transfusion; alloimmunization; TRIM21; red blood cell; platelet
The detection of platelet isoantibodies by the release of (3H)serotonin from platelets has been evaluated. The conditions for optimal release of (3H)serotonin with platelet isoantibodies using a microtechnique have been defined. A group of cardiac surgery patients were followed pre- and post-transfusions, with 48percent developing a positive serotonin release assay. Of these patients, 16percent also had a platelet complement-fixing and/or lymphocytotoxic isoantibody. There was variation in the degree of correlation between (3H)serotonin release and lymphocytotoxicity using individual National Institutes of Health typing serum. The matching obtained between family members by both techniques showed a close correlation when each technique was evaluated separately using the same NIH typing serum. The detection of iso-antibodies in patients with hematological malignancies correlated with the unresponsiveness to unmatched platelet transfusions in 15 out of 17 cases. The use of the patient's isoantibody to matched platelets of family members by (3H)serotonin release correlated well with the clinical response to transfusion with these platelets. The data suggest that (a) platelet isoantibodies can be detected with increased frequency by (3H)serotonin release; (b) (3H)serotonin release is a specific reaction depending on the surface antigen of the platelet; and (c) the method can be used to match compatible family members for platelet transfusions.
The platelet Fc receptor, a membrane receptor for immune complexes or aggregated immunoglobulin (Ig)G, was compared in normal and myeloproliferative platelets. Washed platelets from 11 normal donors and 27 patients were incubated with fluorescein-conjugated ovalbumin-anti-ovalbumin complexes and examined by phase and fluorescence microscopy. Only 3.2±1% of the normal platelets stained, whereas 76±16% of the myeloproliferative platelets stained with the immune complex. The fluorescent staining was mediated by a platelet Fc receptor, as shown by the absence of platelet staining with immune complex containing antibody preincubated with Staphylococcal protein A to block the Fc region. In addition, no staining occurred with antigen or antibody alone or after preincubation of platelets with aggregated IgG. Platelets from normal or myeloproliferative donors did not stain with the immune complexes when the incubation was performed in plasma. The increased expression of Fc receptors on myeloproliferative platelets was corroborated by studies of [14C]serotonin release by immune complexes or aggregated IgG in 8 patients and 17 normal donors. Serotonin uptake was similar in both groups. Myeloproliferative platelets released significantly more serotonin than normal platelets at each concentration of immune complex or aggregated IgG; in addition, myeloproliferative platelets released serotonin in response to much smaller concentrations of immune complex or aggregated IgG. [14C]Serotonin release by myeloproliferative platelets was not increased above that of normal platelets when thrombin was used as the stimulus. The results were independent of patient age, sex, therapy, hematocrit, or platelet size. Interaction of circulating immune complexes with platelets bearing increased Fc receptors may contribute to the abnormal hemostasis associated with the myeloproliferative syndromes.
Bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induces rapid thrombocytopenia, hypotension and sepsis. Although growing evidence suggests that platelet activation plays a critical role in LPS-induced thrombocytopenia and tissue damage, the mechanism of LPS-mediated platelet activation is unclear. Here we show that LPS stimulates platelet secretion of dense and α granules as indicated by ATP release and P-selectin expression, and thus enhances platelet activation induced by low concentrations of platelet agonists. Platelets express components of the LPS receptor-signaling complex, including Toll-like receptor (TLR4), CD14, MD2, and MyD88, and the effect of LPS on platelet activation was abolished by an anti-TLR4 blocking antibody or TLR4 knockout, suggesting that the effect of LPS on platelet aggregation requires the TLR4 pathway. Furthermore, LPS- potentiated thrombin- and collagen-induced platelet aggregation and FeCl3-induced thrombus formation were abolished in MyD88 knockout mice. LPS also induced cGMP elevation, and the stimulatory effect of LPS on platelet aggregation was abolished by inhibitors of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) and the cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG). LPS-induced cGMP elevation was inhibited by an anti-TLR4 antibody or by TLR4 deficiency, suggesting that activation of the cGMP/PKG pathway by LPS involves the TLR4 pathway. Taken together, our data indicate that LPS stimulates platelet secretion and potentiates platelet aggregation through a TLR4/MyD88 and cGMP/PKG-dependent pathway.