The effect of antiplatelet antibody on in vitro platelet function was investigated in 15 dogs with immune-mediated thrombocytopenia (ITP). Platelet aggregation was assessed after addition of serum from healthy dogs (n = 5) or dogs with ITP (n = 15) to platelet-rich plasma from a healthy donor dog. The aggregation responses to adenosine diphosphate, thrombin, and collagen/epinephrine were measured as the maximum aggregation observed after 2 minutes. In 13 of 15 dogs with ITP, maximal aggregation was significantly inhibited in response to ADP, thrombin, or collagen/epinephrine. The slope of the aggregation curve was decreased after addition of serum from 9 of 15 patients. A polyclonal rabbit anti—dog platelet antiserum induced inhibition of aggregation with all 3 agonists.
Serum from control dogs neither inhibited nor activated platelet aggregation. Aggregation experiments were repeated with all 3 agonists after addition of patient immunoglobulin (lg)G or IgG from a healthy dog to platelet-rich plasma. The IgG fraction from 9 of 10 dogs with ITP suppressed platelet aggregation. The IgG fraction from polyclonal rabbit anti—dog platelet antiserum inhibited platelet aggregation with all agonists. These results suggest that many canine ITP patients have circulating antibodies that, in addition to causing platelet destruction, may cause platelet dysfunction.