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Ultrasound Med Biol. 2006 Jun;32(6):893-904.

Biological and environmental factors affecting ultrasound-induced hemolysis in vitro: 5. Temperature.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.


This research project tested the hypothesis that cold-equilibrated (approximately 0 degrees C) human erythrocytes in vitro in the presence of an ultrasound contrast agent (Albunex) will undergo greater ultrasound-induced hemolysis than physiologically equilibrated (37 degrees C) human erythrocytes in vitro because of a temperature-related transition in membrane fluidity leading to increased fragility. First, it was shown that cold-equilibrated erythrocytes are more susceptible to mechanically induced hemolysis than physiologically equilibrated erythrocytes. Second, when adjustments were made for (1) temperature-dependent efficiencies of a 1-MHz transducer (200 micros pulse length, 20 ms interpulse interval, 30 s exposure duration) such that when cold or physiological temperatures were employed, there were equivalent acoustic outputs in terms of peak negative pressure (MPa P-) and (2) comparable viscosities of the 0 and 37 degrees C blood plasmas, the cold (approximately 0 degrees C) erythrocytes displayed substantially greater amounts of ultrasound-induced hemolysis than the physiological (37 degrees C) erythrocytes. The data supported the hypothesis.

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