Phospholipidomics reveals differences in glycerophosphoserine profiles of hypothermically stored red blood cells and microvesicles.

Biochimica et biophysica acta

PubMedID: 23123566

Bicalho B, Holovati JL, Acker JP. Phospholipidomics reveals differences in glycerophosphoserine profiles of hypothermically stored red blood cells and microvesicles. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013;1828(2):317-26.
During their normal in vivo life cycle erythrocytes (red blood cells, RBCs) undergo biochemical changes leading to membrane microvesiculation and shedding. RBC microvesiculation also occurs in vitro under conditions of blood bank storage, so microvesicles (MVs) accumulate in the storage (preservation) medium over storage time. Considerable effort has been put into gaining a mechanistic understanding of the RBC microvesiculation process, as this is crucial to better understand RBC biology in disease and in health. Additionally, MVs accumulated in stored RBCs have been implicated in transfusion adverse inflammatory reactions, with chloroform extractable compounds, thus lipophilic, known to trigger the effect. However, because thin layer chromatography resolution of RBC and MV lipids has always enabled one to conclude high compositional similarities, in depth analysis of MV lipids has not been extensively pursued. Here we present an orbitrap mass spectrometry (MS) approach to compare the phospholipid composition of RBCs and MVs from leukoreduced, hypothermically (2-6°C) stored RBC units. We used shotgun MS analysis and electrospray ionization (ESI) intra-source separation, and demonstrated high similarity of compositional profiles, except for glycerophosphoserines (PS). Contrasting abundances of PS 38:4 and PS 38:1 characterized MV and RBC profiles and suggested that storage-associated microvesiculation possibly involves shedding of specific membrane rafts. This finding indicates that phospholipidomics could likely contribute to a better understanding of the RBC microvesiculation process.