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Keywords:

  • autologous transfusion;
  • in vivo recovery and survival;
  • platelet activation;
  • platelet concentrate preparation;
  • prostaglandin E1

Summary. A paired study in 10 autologous volunteer donors was undertaken to investigate the efficacy of adding prostaglandin E1 (PGE1) in vitro during routine platelet concentrate (PC) production. After 5 days storage, PCs prepared with PGE1 were compared with control PCs. In vivo platelet recovery, survival and biodistribution were determined following autologous infusion of indium-111 labelled platelets into volunteers, together with the in vitro evaluation of platelet function and biochemistry.

PGE1 facilitated easier and faster platelet resuspension following centrifugation. After storage there were few significant in vitro differences between PCs prepared with PGE1 and control PCs. The artifactual leucocyte concentration was significantly lower in the presence of PGE1, suggesting less platelet aggregates had been formed during storage and β-thromboglobulin release was significantly reduced by PGE1, 14.0±6.0 μg per 109platelets compared with 22.3±9.8μg per 109platelets in control PCs, (P < 0.01), indicating PGE1 reduced both platelet aggregation and activation probably at the initial preparation stage, known to produce the greatest trauma.

Initial in vivo platelet recovery for PCs prepared with PGE1 was similar to that of control PCs, 41.1 ± 12.5% vs. 44.4±80%, respectively, and there were no differences in organ distribution at 24h. However, in vivo multiple hit survival was reduced in the presence of PGE1, 5.8 ± 1.6 days compared with 6.9 ± 1.4 days in control PCs (P < 0.05).

Despite the ability of PGE1 to facilitate platelet resuspension and inhibit platelet aggregation and activation during preparation of the PCs, the reduced in vivo survival time may preclude the use of PGE1 during routine PC preparation.