BACKGROUND: Platelet (PLT) products have a short shelf life (5 days) owing in part to the deterioration of the quality of PLTs stored at 22°C. This creates significant inventory challenges, and blood banks may suffer shortages and high wastage as a result. The precise biochemical pathways involved in the PLT storage lesion are unknown and must be understood before storage time can be extended.
STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: Informed by previous proteomics analysis, specific PLT glycoprotein (GP) concentration and surface expression were examined by Western blot and flow cytometry. mRNA concentration was determined by Northern blot and real-time polymerase chain reaction. Protein synthesis was confirmed by [35S]methionine labeling.
RESULTS: Western blots of GPIIIa revealed a twofold increase in concentration on Day 7 of storage and a fourfold increase on Day 10. By flow cytometry, surface expression of the GPIIb/IIIa increased by 13.4 percent on Day 7 and 41.9 percent on Day 10. Full-length GPIIIa mRNA was present throughout this storage period and was shown to have a half-life of approximately 2.9 days. Translation of GPIIb and IIIa during storage was confirmed by [35S]methionine labeling.
CONCLUSION: This article confirms that PLTs are capable of synthesizing biologically relevant proteins ex vivo throughout a 10-day storage period with particularly long-lived mRNA and provides a framework through which the biochemical mechanisms involved in the translational regulation of proteins thought to be involved in the initiation or exacerbation of the PLT storage lesion can be investigated.