Protocols for the Isolation of Platelets for Research and Contrast to Production of Platelet Concentrates for Transfusion

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Platelets are specialized cellular elements of blood and play a central role in maintaining normal hemostasis, wound healing, and host defense but also are implicated in pathologic processes of thrombosis, inflammation, and tumor progression and dissemination. Transfusion of platelet concentrates is an important treatment for thrombocytopenia (low platelet count) due to disease or significant blood loss, with the goal being to prevent bleeding or to arrest active bleeding. In blood circulation, platelets are in a resting state; however, when triggered by a stimulus, such as blood vessel injury, become activated (also termed procoagulant). Platelet activation is the basis of their biological function to arrest active bleeding, comprising a complex interplay of morphological phenotype/shape change, adhesion, expression of signaling molecules, and release of bioactive factors, including extracellular vesicles/microparticles. Advances in high-throughput mRNA and protein profiling techniques have brought new understanding of platelet biological functions, including identification of novel platelet proteins and secreted molecules, analysis of functional changes between normal and pathologic states, and determining the effects of processing and storage on platelet concentrates for transfusion. However, because platelets are very easily activated, it is important to understand the different in vitro methods for platelet isolation commonly used and how they differ from the perspective for use as research samples in clinical chemistry. Two simple methods are described here for the preparation of research-scale platelet samples from human whole blood, and detailed notes are provided about the methods used for the preparation of platelet concentrates for transfusion.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSerum/Plasma Proteomics
Subtitle of host publicationMethods and Protocols
EditorsDavid W. Greening, Richard J. Simpson
Place of PublicationNew York NY USA
PublisherHumana Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781071629789
ISBN (Print)9781071629772
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press
ISSN (Print)1064-3745
ISSN (Electronic)1940-6029


  • Activation
  • Blood
  • Isolation
  • Platelet
  • Proteomics
  • Transfusion

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