The anticoagulant effects of ethyl pyruvate in whole blood samples

Harald Haidl, Alex Schlagenhauf, Angelika Krebs, Harald Plank, Willibald Wonisch, Vera Fengler, Gerd Hörl, Martin Köstenberger, Thomas Wagner, Gerhard Cvirn*, Seth Hallstrom, Erwin Tafelt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background Ethyl pyruvate (EP), the ethyl ester of pyruvate, has proven antiinflammatory and antioxidative properties. Additionally, anticoagulant properties have been suggested recently. EP, therefore, is a potentially antiatherosclerotic drug. We aimed to investigate whether EP possesses antiplatelet and anticoagulant properties particularly in the physiological environment of whole blood. Methods We investigated the effects of increasing concentrations of EP on platelet function, on the course of clot development, and on standard coagulation times. Additionally, clot ultrastructure using scanning electron microscopy was analysed. Results EP exerted significant antiplatelet actions: I) Impedance aggregometry amplitudes (11.7 ± 3.0 ohm, 0 μg/mL EP) dose dependently decreased (7.8 ± 3.1 ohm, 1000 μg/mL EP; -33.3%). ATP exocytosis (0.87 ± 0.24 nM, 0 μg/mL EP) measured by the luminiscent method dose-dependently decreased (0.56 ± 0.14 nM, 1000 μg/mL; -35.6%). ii) Closure times (104.4 ± 23.8 s, 0 μg/mL EP) using the Platelet function analyzer were dose-dependently prolonged (180.5 ± 82.5 s, 1000 μg/mL EP; +72.9%) using membranes coated with collagen/ADP. iii) Surface coverage (15.9 ± 5.1%, 0 μg/mL EP) dose-dependently decreased (9.0 ± 3.7%, 1000 μg/mL EP; -43.4%) using the Cone and Platelet analyzer. EP also exerted significant anticoagulant actions: Coagulation times (177.9 ± 37.8, 0 μg/mL EP) evaluated by means of thrombelastometry were dose-dependently prolonged (212.8 ± 57.7 s, 1000 μg/mL EP; +19.6%). Activated partial thromboplastin times (31.5 ± 1.8 s, 0 μg/ mL EP) were dose-dependently prolonged (35.6 ± 2.3 s, 1000 μg/mL EP; +13.0%). Prothrombin times (0.94 ± 0.02 INR, 0 μg/mL EP) were dose-dependently prolonged (1.09 ± 0.04 INR, 1000 μg/mL EP; +16.0%). Conclusion We found that EP possesses antiplatelet and anticoagulant properties in whole blood. Together with its proven anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties, EP is a potentially antiatherogenic drug.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0240541
Number of pages17
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number9 October
Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science

Treatment code (Nähere Zuordnung)

  • Basic - Fundamental (Grundlagenforschung)

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