Osman A, Hitzler WE, Ameur A, Provost P
PLoS ONE 10 (7) e0133070 [2015-07-14; online 2015-07-14]
Platelet concentrates (PCs) are prepared at blood banks for transfusion to patients in certain clinical conditions associated with a low platelet count. To prevent transfusion-transmitted infections via PCs, different pathogen reduction (PR) systems have been developed that inactivate the nucleic acids of contaminating pathogens by chemical cross-linking, a mechanism that may also affect platelets' nucleic acids. We previously reported that treatment of stored platelets with the PR system Intercept significantly reduced the level of half of the microRNAs that were monitored, induced platelet activation and compromised the platelet response to physiological agonists. Using genome-wide differential expression (DE) RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq), we now report that Intercept markedly perturbs the mRNA transcriptome of human platelets and alters the expression level of >800 mRNAs (P<0.05) compared to other PR systems and control platelets. Of these, 400 genes were deregulated with DE corresponding to fold changes (FC) ≥ 2. At the p-value < 0.001, as many as 147 genes were deregulated by ≥ 2-fold in Intercept-treated platelets, compared to none in the other groups. Finally, integrated analysis combining expression data for microRNA (miRNA) and mRNA, and involving prediction of miRNA-mRNA interactions, disclosed several positive and inverse correlations between miRNAs and mRNAs in stored platelets. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that Intercept markedly deregulates the platelet mRNA transcriptome, concomitant with reduced levels of mRNA-regulatory miRNAs. These findings should enlighten authorities worldwide when considering the implementation of PR systems, that target nucleic acids and are not specific to pathogens, for the management of blood products.