TIMed CENTER Center for Technological Innovation in Medicine

Research Projects


Target: Investigation of temperature-dependent thrombocyte activation in plasma concentrates to extend the shelf-life of preserves.

Thrombocyte-transfusions are either used to reduce the risk of life-threatening haemorrhages or for the therapy of active bleedings that result from pathological blood platelets (for example after a chemotherapy).

Generally, thrombocytes are stored in gas-permeable, aseptic plastic bags at a temperature of +22° C (± 2° C). In these conditions, they have a shelf life of five days. Thus, the pharmacological management tries to avoid the activation and aggregation in thrombocyte-concentrates by means of anticoagulants (heparin, citrate). By doing that, patients should be provided with functioning, which means not activated, thrombocytes. The majority of deceases resulting form transfusion-related sepses, which were due to bacterial contamination, have occured after thrombocyte-concentrates at the end of their shelf life have been administered. 

The research team responsible for the Thrombotherm project examines the temperature-dependent thrombocyte activation in plasma concentrates. The aim of this project is to extend the shelf life of blood preserves, as well as to determine the current platelet condition by means of a "real-time" analysis. High-resolution microscopy techniques are used to monitor cellular changes at both macro- and nano-levels in the course of the progression of activation cascades on various biochemical surfaces.

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