The Effects of Aprotinin on Platelet Function in Blood Exposed to Eptifibatide: An in Vitro Analysis

Ryan G. Schmer, Alfred H. Stammers, Rebecca L. Ahlgren, Tunisia A. Ellis, Chen Gao, Bernadette T. Nutter, Hunter B. Holcomb, Lynette M. Hock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The preoperative use of platelet inhibitors has increased the risk of bleeding during cardiac surgery. Aprotinin has been shown to preserve hemostatic function in patients undergoing CPB. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of aprotinin on coagulation in blood exposed to eptifibatide. Freshly collected bovine blood was used in an in vitro model of extracorporeal circulation. Blood was separated into two groups: activated (60 minutes exposure to bubble oxygenation) and nonactivated. Within each group there were four subgroups: control (n = 3), eptifibatide (2.8 μg/mL, n = 3), aprotinin (250 KIU/mL, n = 3), and eptifibatide with aprotinin (2.8 μg/mL, 250 KIU/mL, n = 3). Twenty-four modified extracorporeal circuits utilizing a hard-shell venous reservoir and cardioplegia heat exchangers were used. Blood flow was maintained at a rate of 1.25 L/min for a total of 170 minutes, at 37 ± 1°C. Samples were collected at 0, 20, 50, and 110 minutes with the following variables measured: thromboelastograph (TEG), activated clotting time (ACT), and hematocrit (Hct). Results demonstrated that at 110 minutes, the TEG index (TI) was decreased by four-fold in the activated group compared to the nonactivated group (-4.6 ± 1.2 vs. 1.4 ± 1.5, p < .05). The administration of aprotinin resulted in preservation of the TI as compared to eptifibatide-treated blood (-4.9 ± 1.2 vs. -7.9 ± 1.2, p < .05). Aprotinin combined with eptifibatide reduced coagulation derangements when compared to eptifibatide alone (-5.2 ± 1.2 vs. -7.9 ± 1.2, p < .05). In conclusion, aprotinin attenuated the platelet inhibition effect of eptifibatide during in vitro CPB, resulting in improved coagulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)304-311
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Extra-Corporeal Technology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2003


  • Aprotinin
  • Cardiopulmonary bypass
  • Coagulopathies
  • Eptifibatide
  • Platelet dysfunction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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