In routine tests to investigate immunological mechanisms as a cause for enhanced destruction of transfused platelets, serum from the patient is tested against a panel of donor lymphocytes and platelets to demonstrate the presence of antibodies against HLA or platelet specific antibodies. Here we describe a flow cytometric technique in which in vivo binding of immunoglobulins (Ig) is measured. By comparing the histograms of the platelet suspensions before and after transfusion, four different patterns were obtained: no Ig binding before and after transfusion (pattern 1), pre- existent Ig binding (patterns 2 and 3) or preferential Ig binding to the transfused platelets (pattern 4). This technique was tested in 164 random platelet transfusions and 34 HLA-matched platelet transfusions. A statistically significant association was found between pattern 1 and a negative result of the indirect platelet immunofluorescence test for the detection of antibodies in the serum taken before the transfusion studied or a good platelet recovery and between pattern 4 and a positive indirect platelet immunofluorescence test or a low platelet recovery.

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British Journal of Haematology
Department of Internal Medicine

Levin, M.-D., de Vries, W., de Veld, J., Doekharan, D., van der Holt, B., & van 't Veer, M. (1999). Platelet-bound immunogloblins before and after platelet transfusion: Measurement of in vivo binding. British Journal of Haematology, 104(2), 397–402. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2141.1999.01177.x