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Characterization of Collagen Thin Films for von Willebrand Factor Binding and Platelet Adhesion

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journal contribution
posted on 15.11.2011, 00:00 authored by Ryan R. Hansen, Alena A. Tipnis, Tara C. White-Adams, Jorge A. Di Paola, Keith B. Neeves
Von Willebrand factor (VWF) binding and platelet adhesion to subendothelial collagens are initial events in thrombus formation at sites of vascular injury. These events are often studied in vitro using flow assays designed to mimic vascular hemodynamics. Flow assays commonly employ collagen-functionalized substrates, but a lack of standardized methods of surface ligation limits their widespread use as a clinical diagnostic. Here, we report the use of collagen thin films (CTF) in flow assays. Thin films were grown on hydrophobic substrates from type I collagen solutions of increasing concentration (10, 100, and 1000 μg/mL). We found that the corresponding increase in fiber surface area determined the amount of VWF binding and platelet adhesion. The association rate constant (ka) of plasma VWF binding at a wall shear stress of 45 dyn/cm2 was 0.3 × 105, 1.8 × 105, and 1.6 × 105 M–1 s–1 for CTF grown from 10, 100, and 1000 μg/mL solutions, respectively. We observed a 5-fold increase in VWF binding capacity with each 10-fold increase in collagen solution concentration. The association rates of Ser1731Thr and His1786Asp VWF mutants with collagen binding deficiencies were 9% and 22%, respectively, of wild-type rates. Using microfluidic devices for blood flow assays, we observed that CTF supported platelet adhesion at a wall shear rate of 1000 s–1. CTF grown from 10 and 100 μg/mL solutions had variable levels of platelet surface coverage between multiple normal donors. However, CTF substrates grown from 1000 μg/mL solutions had reproducible surface coverage levels (74 ± 17%) between normal donors, and there was significantly diminished surface coverage from two type 1 von Willebrand disease patients (8.0% and 24%). These results demonstrate that collagen thin films are homogeneous and reproducible substrates that can measure dysfunctions in VWF binding and platelet adhesion under flow in a clinical microfluidic assay format.

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