Vox sanguinis

Distribution of a bovine spongiform encephalopathy-derived agent over ion-exchange chromatography used in the preparation of concentrates of fibrinogen and factor VIII.

PMID 15023177


The risk of haemophiliacs contracting variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) via treatment with factor VIII concentrates is not known. Therefore, in order to determine the extent to which the vCJD agent might be removed during the preparation of factor VIII concentrate, the partitioning of a bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)-derived agent was measured over the main purification step used to prepare the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service high-purity factor VIII concentrate (Liberate). Murine-passaged BSE (strain 301V), in the form of a microsomal fraction prepared from infected brain, was used to 'spike' a solution of factor VIII of intermediate purity. The 'spiked' starting material was subjected to solvent-detergent treatment and then to anion-exchange chromatography with Toyopearl DEAE-650M. All fractions were tested for 301V infectivity using a murine bioassay, including the procedures used to clean the ion-exchange media after use. BSE 301V infectivity was reduced by 2.9 log(10) in the fibrinogen fraction and by 2.7 log(10) in the factor VIII fraction. Over 99% of the added 301V infectivity remained bound to the ion-exchange column after elution of factor VIII. A large quantity of infectivity was subsequently removed by washing the ion-exchange media with 2 m NaCl. No further BSE 301V infectivity was detected in column eluates after treatment with 0.1 m NaOH or a second wash with 2 m NaCl. Results using a BSE-derived agent suggest that vCJD infectivity would be substantially removed by the ion-exchange process used in the preparation of fibrinogen and factor VIII concentrate. Although 301V infectivity remained bound to the ion-exchange matrix following elution of factor VIII, this appeared to be eliminated by the procedure used for cleaning the ion-exchange media after each use.