Supplementary Material for: Real-Time Live Confocal Fluorescence Microscopy as a New Tool for Assessing Platelet Vitality

Background: Assessment of platelet vitality is important for patients presenting with inherited or acquired disorders of platelet function and for quality assessment of platelet concentrates. Methods: Herein we combined live stains with intra-vital confocal fluorescence microscopy in order to obtain an imaging method that allows fast and accurate assessment of platelet vitality. Three fluorescent dyes, FITC-coupled wheat germ agglutinin (WGA), tetramethylrhodamine methyl ester perchlorate (TMRM) and acetoxymethylester (Rhod-2), were used to assess platelet morphology, mitochondrial activity and intra-platelet calcium levels. Microscopy was performed with a microlens-enhanced Nipkow spinning disk-based system allowing live confocal imaging. Results: Comparison of ten samples of donor platelets collected before apheresis and platelets collected on days 5 and 7 of storage showed an increase in the percentage of Rhod-2positive platelets from 3.6 to 47 and finally to 71%. Mitochondrial potential was demonstrated in 95.4% of donor platelets and in 92.5% of platelets stored for 7 days. Conclusion: Such fast and accurate visualization of known key parameters of platelet function could be of relevance for studies addressing the quality of platelets after storage and additional manipulation, such as pathogen inactivation, as well as for the analysis of inherited platelet function disorders.