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Blood Donations from Diabetics can be Unsafe

Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2009

New Insights into the Mystery of "High Risk Platelets" from Diabetic Donors

Amid emerging concerns that blood platelets donated for transfusion by individuals with Type 2 diabetes may be unsafe, scientists are reporting the first detailed identification and analysis of a group of abnormal proteins in platelets from diabetic donors. The study could lead to screening tests to detect and monitor these so-called "high risk platelets," the researchers say.

David Springer and colleagues point out in the new study that thousands of patients receive potentially lifesaving transfusions of platelets each year to treat bleeding from trauma and for a wide range of medical conditions. Scientists have known that abnormal platelets in the blood of diabetics may predispose these individuals to heart disease. This has led to concern that platelets from these individuals stored for transfusion may be less effective and even unsafe. However, scientists know little about how diabetic platelets differ from those of healthy people.

The new study identified 122 proteins that differed in the platelets of individuals with diabetes compared to the platelets of non-diabetics. They also found that freshly collected platelets from diabetics show almost as many abnormal changes (more than 100) in protein content as healthy donor platelets stored for up to 5 days. These findings could lead to new tests for detecting and monitoring abnormal platelets to improve the outcome of blood transfusions from both diabetic and healthy individuals, the researchers say.

Source: Diabetes In Control: Their study is scheduled for the June 5 issue of ACS' Journal of Proteome Research, a monthly publication.

 
 
 
 
 
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