Effects Of Acoustic Cavitation On Platelets In The Presence Of An Echo-Contrast Agent

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Ultrasound In Medicine And Biology


A suspension of human platelets in autologous plasma or buffer solution with and without a microbubble echo-contrast agent was exposed in vitro to 730 W/cm2 (ISPPA) ultrasound pulses of duration 40-160 microseconds at 1 MHz and 20-Hz pulse repetition frequency. Inertial cavitation occurring within the samples was monitored during the exposures and a measure of average cavitational activity was calculated for each 5-min exposure. This quantity, with the other acoustic parameters, accounted for up to 75% of the variation in the destruction of platelets as measured by Coulter counter and 83.5% of the release of bound radiolabel using a multiple-interaction statistical model. When the echo-contrast agent was absent, negligible cavitation occurred and the amount of platelet destruction was statistically indistinguishable from sham (no-ultrasound) exposures. Therefore, microbubble echo-contrast agents may interact with ultrasound to cause platelet lysis through the mechanism of inertial cavitation.

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