JPAC Joint United Kingdom (UK) Blood Transfusion and Tissue Transplantation Services Professional Advisory Committee

7.12: Platelets in Additive Solution, Leucocyte Depleted

Update notice:  Section 7.12.1 - Technical information has been updated following the the issue of Change Notification 16 - 2013.
The tables in the sections 7.9.4, 7.10.4, 7.11.4, 7.12.4, 7.29.4 and 7.30.4 have been updated following the issue of Change Notification No 34 – 2016.

A platelet concentrate derived from buffy coats or apheresis, which contains less than 1 × 106 leucocytes and where the suspending medium is additive solution. This component is indicated for patients with reactions to plasma-containing components.

7.12.1: Technical information

  • Donations of whole blood where the bleed time exceeded 15 minutes are not suitable for platelet production.
  • Where prepared from buffy coats, the buffy coats must be prepared at ambient temperature from whole blood where the surface temperature of packs has not dropped below 18°C.
  • Where prepared from buffy coats, initial separation of buffy coat must occur within 24 hours of venepuncture (unless supported by additional validation), with a minimum buffy coat rest period of 2 hours before secondary pooling and processing of buffy coats to produce the final component, which is generally completed before the end of Day 1.
  • The volume of suspension medium must be sufficient to maintain the pH within the range 6.4–7.4 at the end of the shelf life of the component.
  • Where the production process transfers the final component into a pack that was not part of the original pack assembly, a secure system must be in place to ensure a full audit trail and that the correct identification number is put on the final component pack.
  • Platelets in Additive Solution, Leucocyte Depleted, should be transfused through a 170–200 μm filter.

7.12.2: Labelling

For general guidelines, see section 6.6.

The following shall be included on the label:

(* = in eye-readable and UKBTS approved barcode format)

  • Platelets in Additive Solution, Leucocyte Depleted* and volume
  • the blood component producer’s name*
  • a unique pool or batch number or the donation number of all contributing platelet units*
  • the ABO group*
  • the RhD group stated as positive or negative*
  • the expiry date and time*
  • the temperature of storage and a comment that continuous gentle agitation throughout storage is recommended
  • the blood pack lot number*
  • the name, composition and volume of the additive solution.

In addition, the following statements should be made:


Always check patient/component compatibility/identity

Inspect pack and contents for signs of deterioration or damage

Risk of adverse reaction/infection, including vCJD

7.12.3: Storage

For general guidelines, see section 6.7.

  • The storage period depends on a number of factors including the nature of the container, the concentration of platelets, the additive solution used and whether an open or closed system is used.
  • Platelets in Additive Solution, Leucocyte Depleted, should be used within 24 hours of production.
  • If any production stage involves an open system, after preparation the component should be used as soon as possible. If storage is unavoidable, the component should be stored at a core temperature of 22 ±2°C with continuous agitation and used within 6 hours.

7.12.4: Testing

In addition to the mandatory and other tests required for blood donations described in Chapter 9, and leucocyte counting (see sections 6.3 and 7.1), a minimum of 75% of those components tested for the parameters shown in Table 7.9 shall meet the specified values.

Table 7.9 Platelets in Additive Solution, Leucocyte Depleted – additional tests

Parameter Frequency of test Specification


1% or as determined by statistical process control
(if ≤10 components produced per month then test every available component)

Within locally defined nominal volume range

Platelet count

≥200 × 109/unit

pH at end of shelf life


Leucocyte count*

As per sections 6.3 and 7.1

<1 × 106/unit

* Methods validated for counting low levels of leucocytes must be used

Note: Visual inspection of platelet components for the swirling phenomenon, clumping, excessive red cell contamination and abnormal volume is a useful pre-issue check.

7.12.5: Transportation

For general guidelines, see section 6.11.

  • Containers for transporting platelets should be equilibrated at room temperature before use. During transportation the temperature of platelets must be kept as close as possible to the recommended storage temperature and, on receipt, unless intended for immediate therapeutic use, the component should be transferred to storage at a core temperature of
    22 ±2°C with continuous gentle agitation.
  • Plastic overwraps should be removed prior to storage.