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Dimeric FcγR ectodomains detect pathogenic anti-platelet factor 4-heparin antibodies in heparin-induced thromobocytopenia

Wines, B.D., Tan, C.W., Duncan, E., McRae, S., Baker, R.I., Andrews, R.K., Esparon, S., Gardiner, E.E. and Hogarth, P.M. (2018) Dimeric FcγR ectodomains detect pathogenic anti-platelet factor 4-heparin antibodies in heparin-induced thromobocytopenia. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 16 (12). pp. 2520-2525.

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Heparin‐induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is a major and potentially fatal consequence of antibodies produced against platelet factor 4 (PF4)–heparin complexes following heparin exposure. Not all anti‐PF4–heparin antibodies are pathogenic, so overdiagnosis can occur, with resulting inappropriate use of alternative anticoagulation therapies that have associated risks of bleeding. However, definitive platelet functional assays are not widely available for routine analysis.

To assess the utility of dimeric recombinant soluble FcγRIIa (rsFcγRIIa) ectodomains for detecting HIT antibodies.

Plasma from 27 suspected HIT patients were tested for pathogenic anti‐PF4–heparin antibodies by binding of a novel dimeric FcγRIIa ectodomain probe. Plasmas were also tested by the use of PF4–heparin IgG ELISA, the HemosIL AcuStar HIT IgG‐specific assay, and a serotonin release assay (SRA).

The dimeric rsFcγRIIa test produced no false positives and excluded four samples that were positive by IgG ELISA. In this small patient cohort, the novel assay correctly assigned 93% of the suspected HIT patients, with two of the HIT patients being scored as false negatives. The improved discrimination of the novel assay over the IgG ELISA, which scored four false positives, supports the mechanistic interpretation that binding of dimeric rsFcγRIIa detects pairs of closely spaced IgG antibodies in PF4–heparin immune complexes.

This study found the cell‐free, function‐based dimeric rsFcγRIIa assay to be convenient, simple, and potentially predictive of HIT. The assay had improved specificity over the IgG ELISA, and correlated strongly with the AcuStar HIT IgG‐specific assay, warranting further evaluation of its potential to identify HIT in larger patient cohorts.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Engineering and Information Technology
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Copyright: © 2018 The Authors.
United Nations SDGs: Goal 3: Good Health and Well-Being
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