Engineering a simple lateral flow device for animal blood coagulation monitoring

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Increasing numbers of animals are diagnosed with thromboembolism, requiring anticoagulation treatment to prevent thrombotic events. Frequent and periodic coagulation monitoring is critical to ensure treatment effectiveness and patient safety by limiting blood coagulation ability within the desired therapeutic range. Point-of-care diagnostics is an ideal candidate for frequent coagulation monitoring due to rapid test results and no need for laboratory setting. This article reports the first utilization of no-reaction lateral flow assay (nrLFA) device for simple and low-cost animal blood coagulation monitoring in resource-limited setting. The nrLFA device consists of sample pad, analytical membrane and wicking pad, without conjugate pad, reagent printing or membrane drying. Citrated and heparinized animal blood were utilized to mimic different blood coagulation abilities in vitro by adding reversal agents CaCl2 and protamine sulfate. The travel distance of red blood cells (RBCs) on the nrLFA after a pre-determined test time serves as endpoint marker. Upon adding 500 mM CaCl2 solution to citrated bovine, canine, rabbit and equine blood, the average travel distance decreases from 10.9 to 9.4 mm, 8.8 to 5.7 mm, 12.6 to 9 mm, and 15.3 to 11.3 mm, respectively. For heparinized bovine and rabbit blood, the average distance decreases from 14.5 to 11.4 mm and from 9.8 to 7.2 mm, respectively, when adding 300 mg/l protamine sulfate solution. The effect of hematocrit on RBC travel distance in the nrLFA was also investigated. The nrLFA device will potentially improve treatment efficiency, patient safety, quality of life, and satisfaction for both animal patients and their owners.



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