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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of heparin bonding on catheter-induced fibrin formation and platelet activation.

Pathologic and experimental evidence indicates that platelet activation and fibrin formation contribute to the pathogenesis of angina pectoris, coronary vasospasm and myocardial infarction. Detection of localized intravascular platelet activation and fibrin formation in vivo by selective blood sampling requires catheters that do not induce coagulation ex vivo. We studied the effect of heparin bonding of catheter surfaces on activation of the coagulation system by cardiovascular catheters. Woven Dacron, polyvinylchloride, and polyurethane catheters were tested and compared with identical catheters with heparin-bonded surfaces in 47 patients undergoing percutaneous cardiac catheterization. Platelet activation was measured by radioimmunoassay of plasma platelet factor 4 (PF4), beta-thromboglobulin (BTG), and thromboxane B2 (TXB2) in blood samples withdrawn through catheters, and fibrin formation was assessed by determination of fibrinopeptide A (FPA) levels. In blood samples collected through conventional catheters, FPA, PF4, BTG, and TXB2 levels were markedly elevated; blood sampling through heparin-bonded catheters had no significant effect on FPA, PF4, BTG, or TXB2 levels. Scanning electron microscopy disclosed extensive platelet aggregates and fibrin strands adherent to the surface of conventional catheters but not to heparin-bonded catheter surfaces. This study demonstrates that (1) collection of blood samples through cardiovascular catheters causes artifactual elevation of FPA, PF4, BTG, and TXB2 levels, and (2) heparin-bonded catheter surfaces effectively prevent catheter-induced platelet alpha-granule release and fibrin formation on catheter surfaces. Heparin-bonded catheters will facilitate investigation of the role of intravascular coagulation in coronary artery disease by eliminating catheter-induced fibrin formation and platelet activation.[1]


  1. Effect of heparin bonding on catheter-induced fibrin formation and platelet activation. Nichols, A.B., Owen, J., Grossman, B.A., Marcella, J.J., Fleisher, L.N., Lee, M.M. Circulation (1984) [Pubmed]
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