Biocompatibility assessment of haemodialysis membrane materials by proteomic investigations

Luisa Pieroni, Stefano Levi Mortera, Viviana Greco, Vittorio Sirolli, Maurizio Ronci, Paolo Felaco, Giorgio Fucci, Silvia De Fulviis, Renato Massoud, Stefano Condò, Ambrogio Capria, Nicola Di Daniele, Sergio Bernardini, Andrea Urbani, Mario Bonomini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The exposure of blood to an artificial surface such as the haemodialysis membrane results in the nearly instantaneous deposition of a layer of plasma proteins. The composition of the protein layer profoundly influences all subsequent events, and to a large extent determines the biocompatibility of the biomaterial. In the present study, we examine the protein adsorption capacity and coagulation profiles of the polysulfone-based helixone material in comparison to cellulose triacetate. A differential profiling investigation using shotgun proteomics data-independent analysis was applied to eluates obtained with each membrane after a dialysis session, in order to assess the function of desorbed proteins. Functional classification and network analysis performed using bioinformatics tools shed light on the involvement of adsorbed proteins into important molecular processes, such as lipid transport and metabolism, cell growth differentiation and communication, and the coagulation cascade. The collected evidence was further validated by targeted mass spectrometry using selected reaction monitoring on proteotypic transitions of key protein effectors, confirming the different panels of adsorbed protein on each membrane. The coagulation profile during haemodialysis of patients under polysulfone-based helixone filter cartridges was also assessed showing a slightly higher platelet activation profile after the dialysis session. The overall collected evidence highlights a modulation of the coagulation biological pathway during haemodialysis, which is largely influenced by the biomaterial used.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1633-1643
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular BioSystems
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology


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