Effect of anticoagulants on 162 circulating immune related proteins in healthy subjects

Cytokine. 2018 Jun;106:114-124. doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2017.10.021. Epub 2017 Oct 28.


Diagnosis of complex disease and response to treatment is often associated with multiple indicators, both clinical and laboratorial. With the use of biomarkers, various mechanisms have been unraveled which can lead to better and faster diagnosis, predicting and monitoring of response to treatment and new drug development. With the introduction of multiplex technology for immunoassays and the growing awareness of the role of immune-monitoring during new therapeutic interventions it is now possible to test large numbers of soluble mediators in small sample volumes. However, standardization of sample collection and laboratory assessments remains suboptimal. We developed a multiplex immunoassay for detection of 162 immune related proteins in human serum and plasma. The assay was split in panels depending on natural occurring concentrations with a maximum of 60 proteins. The aim of this study was to evaluate precision, accuracy, reproducibility and stability of proteins when repeated freeze-thaw cycles are performed of this in-house developed panel, as well as assessing the protein signature in plasma and serum using various anticoagulants. Intra-assay variance of each mediator was <10%. Inter-assay variance ranged between 1.6 and 37% with an average of 12.2%. Recoveries were similar for all mediators (mean 99.8 ± 2.6%) with a range between 89-107%. Next we measured all mediators in serum, EDTA plasma and sodium heparin plasma of 43 healthy control donors. Of these markers only 19 showed similar expression profiles in the 3 different matrixes. Only 5 mediators were effected by multiple freeze-thawing cycles. Principal component analysis revealed different coagulants cluster separately and that sodium heparin shows the most consistent profile.

Keywords: Anticoagulants; Cytokine; Luminex; Plasma; Serum; Validation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anticoagulants / pharmacology*
  • Edetic Acid / pharmacology
  • Female
  • Freezing
  • Healthy Volunteers*
  • Heparin / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Immunoassay
  • Immunoproteins / metabolism*
  • Limit of Detection
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Protein Stability
  • Reference Standards
  • Reproducibility of Results


  • Anticoagulants
  • Immunoproteins
  • Heparin
  • Edetic Acid