Red blood cell phenotype fidelity following glycerol cryopreservation optimized for research purposes.
ABSTRACT: Intact red blood cells (RBCs) are required for phenotypic analyses. In order to allow separation (time and location) between subject encounter and sample analysis, we developed a research-specific RBC cryopreservation protocol and assessed its impact on data fidelity for key biochemical and physiological assays. RBCs drawn from healthy volunteers were aliquotted for immediate analysis or following glycerol-based cryopreservation, thawing, and deglycerolization. RBC phenotype was assessed by (1) scanning electron microscopy (SEM) imaging and standard morphometric RBC indices, (2) osmotic fragility, (3) deformability, (4) endothelial adhesion, (5) oxygen (O2) affinity, (6) ability to regulate hypoxic vasodilation, (7) nitric oxide (NO) content, (8) metabolomic phenotyping (at steady state, tracing with [1,2,3-13C3]glucose ± oxidative challenge with superoxide thermal source; SOTS-1), as well as in vivo quantification (following human to mouse RBC xenotransfusion) of (9) blood oxygenation content mapping and flow dynamics (velocity and adhesion). Our revised glycerolization protocol (40% v/v final) resulted in >98.5% RBC recovery following freezing (-80°C) and thawing (37°C), with no difference compared to the standard reported method (40% w/v final). Full deglycerolization (>99.9% glycerol removal) of 40% v/v final samples resulted in total cumulative lysis of ~8%, compared to ~12-15% with the standard method. The post cryopreservation/deglycerolization RBC phenotype was indistinguishable from that for fresh RBCs with regard to physical RBC parameters (morphology, volume, and density), osmotic fragility, deformability, endothelial adhesivity, O2 affinity, vasoregulation, metabolomics, and flow dynamics. These results indicate that RBC cryopreservation/deglycerolization in 40% v/v glycerol final does not significantly impact RBC phenotype (compared to fresh cells).
Project description:During cryopreservation, ice recrystallization is a major cause of cellular damage. Conventional cryoprotectants such as dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and glycerol function by a number of different mechanisms but do not mitigate or control ice recrystallization at concentrations utilized in cryopreservation procedures. In North America, cryopreservation of human red blood cells (RBCs) utilizes high concentrations of glycerol. RBC units frozen under these conditions must be subjected to a time-consuming deglycerolization process after thawing in order to remove the glycerol to <1% prior to transfusion thus limiting the use of frozen RBC units in emergency situations. We have identified several low molecular mass ice recrystallization inhibitors (IRIs) that are effective cryoprotectants for human RBCs, resulting in 70-80% intact RBCs using only 15% glycerol and slow freezing rates. These compounds are capable of reducing the average ice crystal size of extracellular ice relative to a 15% glycerol control validating the positive correlation between a reduction in ice crystal size and increased post-thaw recovery of RBCs. The most potent IRI from this study is also capable of protecting frozen RBCs against the large temperature fluctuations associated with transient warming.
Project description:In North America, red blood cells (RBCs) are cryopreserved in a clinical setting using high glycerol concentrations (40% w/v) with slow cooling rates (~1°C/min) prior to storage at -80°C, while European protocols use reduced glycerol concentrations with rapid freezing rates. After thawing and prior to transfusion, glycerol must be removed to avoid intravascular hemolysis. This is a time consuming process requiring specialized equipment. Small molecule ice recrystallization inhibitors (IRIs) such as ?-PMP-Glc and ?-pBrPh-Glc have the ability to prevent ice recrystallization, a process that contributes to cellular injury and decreased cell viability after cryopreservation. Herein, we report that addition of 110?mM ?-PMP-Glc or 30?mM ?-pBrPh-Glc to a 15% glycerol solution increases post-thaw RBC integrity by 30-50% using slow cooling rates and emphasize the potential of small molecule IRIs for the preservation of cells.
Project description:The cryopreservation of red blood cells (RBCs) is essential for transfusion therapy and maintaining the inventory of RBCs units. The existing cryoprotectants (CPAs) have many defects, and the search for novel CPAs is becoming a research hotspot. Sodium hyaluronate (SH) is polymerized from sodium glucuronate and N-acetylglucosamine, which has good water binding capacity and biocompatibility. Herein, we reported for the first time that under the action of medium molecular weight sodium hyaluronate (MSH), the thawed RBCs recovery increased from 33.1 ± 5.8% to 63.2 ± 3.5%. In addition, RBCs functions and properties were maintained normally, and the residual MSH could be removed by direct washing. When MSH was used with a very low concentration (5% v/v) of glycerol (Gly), the thawed RBCs recovery could be increased to 92.3 ± 4.6%. In general, 40% v/v Gly was required to achieve similar efficiency. A mathematical model was used to compare the performance of MSH, PVA and trehalose in cryopreservation, and MSH showed the best efficiency. It was found that MSH could periodically regulate the content of intracellular water through the “reservoir effect” to reduce the damages during freezing and thawing. Moreover, MSH could inhibit ice recrystallization when combined with RBCs. The high viscosity and strong water binding capacity of MSH was also conducive to reducing the content of ice. This works points out a new direction for cryopreservation of RBCs and may promote transfusion therapy in clinic. Graphical abstract Image 1 Highlights • MSH improved the RBCs recovery in cryopreservation.• MSH can be removed directly after thawing.• The properties and functions of RBCs were protected by MSH.• High RBCs recovery is found using MSH with 5% v/v glycerol.• The mathematical model is studied for the cryopreservation.• The mechanism is proposed for cryopreservation using MSH.
Project description:Strategies to prevent diabetic microvascular angiopathy focus on the vascular endothelium. Because red blood cells (RBCs) are less deformable in diabetes, we explored an original concept linking decreased RBC deformability to RBC ascorbate and hyperglycemia. We characterized ascorbate concentrations from human and mouse RBCs and plasma, and showed an inverse relationship between RBC ascorbate concentrations and deformability, measured by osmotic fragility. RBCs from ascorbate deficient mice were osmotically sensitive, appeared as spherocytes, and had decreased ?-spectrin. These aberrancies reversed with ascorbate repletion in vivo. Under physiologic conditions, only ascorbate's oxidation product dehydroascorbic acid (DHA), a substrate for facilitated glucose transporters, was transported into mouse and human RBCs, with immediate intracellular reduction to ascorbate. In vitro, glucose inhibited entry of physiologic concentrations of dehydroascorbic acid into mouse and human RBCs. In vivo, plasma glucose concentrations in normal and diabetic mice and humans were inversely related to respective RBC ascorbate concentrations, as was osmotic fragility. Human RBC ?-spectrin declined as diabetes worsened. Taken together, hyperglycemia in diabetes produced lower RBC ascorbate with increased RBC rigidity, a candidate to drive microvascular angiopathy. Because glucose transporter expression, DHA transport, and its inhibition by glucose differed for mouse versus human RBCs, human experimentation is indicated.
Project description:Splenic sequestration of RBCs with reduced surface area and cellular deformability has long been recognized as contributing to pathogenesis of several RBC disorders, including hereditary spherocytosis. However, the quantitative relationship between the extent of surface area loss and splenic entrapment remains to be defined. To address this issue, in the present study, we perfused ex vivo normal human spleens with RBCs displaying various degrees of surface area loss and monitored the kinetics of their splenic retention. Treatment with increasing concentrations of lysophosphatidylcholine resulted in a dose-dependent reduction of RBC surface area at constant volume, increased osmotic fragility, and decreased deformability. The degree of splenic retention of treated RBCs increased with increasing surface area loss. RBCs with a > 18% average surface area loss (> 27% reduced surface area-to-volume ratio) were rapidly and completely entrapped in the spleen. Surface-deficient RBCs appeared to undergo volume loss after repeated passages through the spleen and escape from splenic retention. The results of the present study for the first time define the critical extent of surface area loss leading to splenic entrapment and identify an adaptive volume regulation mechanism that allows spherocytic RBCs to prolong their life span in circulation. These results have significant implications for understanding the clinical heterogeneity of RBC membrane disorders.
Project description:The main function of red blood cells (RBCs) is the transport of respiratory gases along the vascular tree. To fulfill their task, RBCs are able to elastically deform in response to mechanical forces and, pass through the narrow vessels of the microcirculation. Decreased RBC deformability was observed in pathological conditions linked to increased oxidative stress or decreased nitric oxide (NO) bioavailability, like hypertension. Treatments with oxidants and with NO were shown to affect RBC deformability ex vivo, but the mechanisms underpinning these effects are unknown. In this study we investigate whether changes in intracellular redox status/oxidative stress or nitrosation reactions induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) or NO may affect RBC deformability. In a case-control study comparing RBCs from healthy and hypertensive participants, we found that RBC deformability was decreased, and levels of ROS were increased in RBCs from hypertensive patients as compared to RBCs from aged-matched healthy controls, while NO levels in RBCs were not significantly different. To study the effects of oxidants on RBC redox state and deformability, RBCs from healthy volunteers were treated with increasing concentrations of tert-butylhydroperoxide (t-BuOOH). We found that high concentrations of t-BuOOH (? 1 mM) significantly decreased the GSH/GSSG ratio in RBCs, decreased RBC deformability and increased blood bulk viscosity. Moreover, RBCs from Nrf2 knockout (KO) mice, a strain genetically deficient in a number of antioxidant/reducing enzymes, were more susceptible to t-BuOOH-induced impairment in RBC deformability as compared to wild type (WT) mice. To study the role of NO in RBC deformability we treated RBC suspensions from human volunteers with NO donors and nitrosothiols and analyzed deformability of RBCs from mice lacking the endothelial NO synthase (eNOS). We found that NO donors induced S-nitrosation of the cytoskeletal protein spectrin, but did not affect human RBC deformability or blood bulk viscosity; moreover, under unstressed conditions RBCs from eNOS KO mice showed fully preserved RBC deformability as compared to WT mice. Pre-treatment of human RBCs with nitrosothiols rescued t-BuOOH-mediated loss of RBC deformability. Taken together, these findings suggest that NO does not affect RBC deformability per se, but preserves RBC deformability in conditions of oxidative stress.
Project description:Glycerol and trehalose have been widely examined as protective agents in the cryopreservation of red blood cells (RBCs). However, the effectiveness of these reagents alone on cell viability is moderate. Here, the addition of salidroside attenuated oxidative damage of sheep RBCs prior to and post cryostorage. The supplementation of salidroside to the cryopreservation media containing 10% glycerol improved RBC survival by approximately 61.1±4.8% vs 37.9±4.6%. A smaller effect was seen in RBCs cryopreserved in 300 mM trehalose where the addition of salidroside improved survival by 7.6±0.3%. Furthermore, the addition of salidroside to cold storage solution demonstrated a significant reduction of haemolysis after 4 days for RBCs loaded with either glycerol or trehalose, compared to cells incubated without salidroside. RBCs survival was 2-fold greater following freezing in trehalose, compared with glycerol. After 10 days, salidroside enabled a lower haemolysis of 16.7±1.3% compared to 29.0±8.4% for cells incubated without salidroside. However, salidroside had no effect on RBCs which had been frozen in glycerol as the resulting haemolysis rate by day 10 was approximately 60%. Salidroside increased glutathione reductase activity and decreased lactate dehydrogenase activity. Furthermore, it led to reduced carbonylation of proteins in both glycerol and trehalose loaded cells. Finally, no effect on lipid peroxidation was found in the glycerol loaded RBCs although this was reduced in RBCs loaded with trehalose and salidroside. The present findings confirm the potential use of salidroside as a novel protective agent in cryopreservation and refrigerated storage of sheep RBCs.
Project description:Red blood cells (RBC) carry and deliver oxygen (O2) to peripheral tissues through different microcirculatory regions where they are exposed to various levels of shear stress (SS). O2 affinity of hemoglobin (Hb) decreases as the blood enters the microcirculation. This phenomenon determines Hb interactions with RBC membrane proteins that can further regulate the structure of cytoskeleton and affect the mechanical properties of cells. The goal of this study is to evaluate shear-induced RBC deformability and simulate RBC dynamics in blood flow under oxygenated and deoxygenated conditions. Venous blood samples from healthy donors were oxygenated with ambient air or deoxygenated with 100% nitrogen gas for 10 min and immediately applied into an ektacytometer (LORRCA). RBC deformability was measured before and after the application of continuous 5 Pa SS for 300 s by LORRCA and recorded as elongation index (EI) values. A computational model was generated for the simulation of blood flow in a real carotid artery section. EI distribution throughout the artery and its relationships with velocity, pressure, wall SS and viscosity were determined by computational tools. RBC deformability significantly increased in deoxygenation compared to oxygenated state both before and after 5 Pa SS implementation (p < 0.0001). However, EI values after continuous SS were not significant at higher SS levels (>5.15 Pa) in deoxygenated condition. Simulation results revealed that the velocity gradient dominates the generation of SS and the shear thinning effect of blood has a minor effect on it. Distribution of EI was calculated during oxygenation/deoxygenation which is 5-10 times higher around the vessel wall compared to the center of the lumen for sections of the pulsatile flow profile. The extent of RBC deformability increases as RBCs approach to the vessel wall in a real 3D artery model and this increment is higher for deoxygenated condition compared to the oxygenated state. Hypoxia significantly increases shear-induced RBC deformability. RBCs could regulate their own mechanical properties in blood flow by increasing their deformability in hypoxic conditions. Computational tools can be applied for defining hypoxia-mediated RBC deformability changes to monitor blood flow in hypoxic tissues.
Project description:In this study, the effects of prolonged storage on several biophysical properties of red blood cells (RBCs) were investigated. Single cell deformability was used as an important criterion in determining subgroups of RBCs evolved during storage lesion. A deformability-based microfluidic cell sorting technology was applied, which demonstrates the ability to enrich and separate the less deformable subpopulations of stored blood. These less deformable RBC subpopulations were then associated with other important markers such as osmotic fragility indicating cell integrity as well as microparticle content. This work demonstrates a systematic methodology to both monitor and improve banked blood quality, thereby reducing risks related to blood transfusion.
Project description:A pilot cross sectional study was conducted to investigate the role of red blood cells (RBC) deformability in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) without and with diabetic retinopathy (DR) using a dual optical tweezers stretching technique. A dual optical tweezers was made by splitting and recombining a single Nd:YAG laser beam. RBCs were trapped directly (i.e., without microbead handles) in the dual optical tweezers where they were observed to adopt a "side-on" orientation. RBC initial and final lengths after stretching were measured by digital video microscopy, and a Deformability index (DI) calculated. Blood from 8 healthy controls, 5 T2DM and 7 DR patients with respective mean age of 52.4 yrs, 51.6 yrs and 52 yrs was analysed. Initial average length of RBCs for control group was 8.45 ± 0.25 ?m, 8.68 ± 0.49 ?m for DM RBCs and 8.82 ± 0.32 ?m for DR RBCs (p < 0.001). The DI for control group was 0.0698 ± 0.0224, and that for DM RBCs was 0.0645 ± 0.03 and 0.0635 ± 0.028 (p < 0.001) for DR group. DI was inversely related to basal length of RBCs (p =? .02). DI of RBC from DM and DR patients was significantly lower in comparison with normal healthy controls. A dual optical tweezers method can hence be reliably used to assess RBC deformability.