Asprin Project

Title of Project: Platelet Activity Study by Monitoring Urinary Throboxane B2 Metabolite (11-dehydro TXB2 ) Excretion.

Students Involved: Angel Daniels, Kandi Tait, Nicole Larson, Josh Pulido, Andrew Clark.

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Yasmen Simonian, Department Chair CLS

Program(s): Clinical Laboratory Sciences        

Project Description:
It has been reported that aspirin (acetyl salicylic acid) clearly reduces the risk of secondary thrombotic events in individuals who have had incidences of angina, myocardial infarct, peripheral artery disease, or cerebrovascular ischemia.  It has also been noted that aspirin may reduce the risk of initial thrombotic events in healthy individuals, either through their physician’s recommendation or on their own, take aspirin on a regular basis to prevent incidence of developing clots.
There have also been reported cases of patients sustaining myocardial infarctions while on aspirin therapy.  These occurrences have alarmed the researchers to investigate the possibility of platelets becoming resistant to aspirin therapy or there may be pathological conditions causing acquired aspirin resistance.

Many significant questions related to the above topic remain unanswered.  Some of these questions include and are not limited to the following:

• What is the long-term effect of aspirin on platelets?
• How cans an individual balance between avoiding thrombotic events and gastric discomfort or hemorrhagic conditions due to aspirin ingestion?
• What individuals are resistant to aspirin?
• How may aspirin resistance be identified?
• What other medications may be used to reduce the risk of thrombotic activity on individuals who have aspirin resistant platelets?
• Can the anti-thrombotic effects of some dietary components and supplements (i.e. chocolates, Omega-3, blueberries, etc.) that have shown to modify platelet function be measured by urine TXB2 assay?
• Would individuals with aspirin resistance be resistant to the other above mentioned food supplements?
• Would intake of additional dietary substances alter aspirins suppression of platelet activity?

Goals and Objectives:
Weber State University’s Clinical Laboratory Sciences program has an opportunity to collaborate with the Aspirin Works reference laboratory located in Colorado.  This project will provide the chance to help establish the results obtained from the previous laboratory test to measure platelet activity using urine sample instead of blood.  Aspirin Works reference laboratory has developed the first international laboratory testing method to measure urinary metabolites related to platelet activity.  These metabolites are unique in a sense that they can detect the presence or the absence of platelet activity following ingestion of aspirin or any other dietary supplements.

It has been documented that urinary levels of 11-dehydro TXB2 are elevated in atherosclerosis, the chronic phase following stroke, transient ischemic attack, intracerebral hemorrhage, and arterial fibrillation.  Subsequently the levels of 11-dehydro TBX2 are decreased following aspirin therapy, even in cases of patients with myocardial infarction, atherosclerosis, and arterial fibrillation.

Lower levels of 11-dehydro TBX2 in urine will indicate that aspirin or other specific substances are suppressing platelet activity and consequently reducing incidences of thrombosis.  Results from this project can be published and may provide answers to some of the above questions in addition to paving the road for further studies investigating platelet therapy and cardiovascular disease.

Many investigators and the increasing incidents of cardiovascular problem cases have been previously established the need for this study.  The opportunity to participate in this research is unique, and the commitment from Aspirin Works is solid.  The results from funding this project will be numerous.  The students and faculty will not only gain extraordinary experience they will also be able to produce several publications and presentations as the result of the study.  The publications and the presentations will be beneficial to the program, to the institution, to the health care field, and eventually to the patients.

Materials and Methods:
There will be approximately 30-60 healthy individuals between the age of 18 and 65 participating in the project.  The study will require the administration of three different dosages of aspirin and two other dietary supplements Omega-3 (fish oil) and dark chocolate.  Persons who are allergic to any of these substances will not be included in the study.  Initial screening and medical history will be used to assure that there will be no health risks associated with the study.

A baseline urine specimen will be collected at the beginning of the study.  Each dietary supplement will be administered orally for a period of seven days.  A second-morning urine specimen will be collected at the end of each seven-day period.  A seven-day wash out period, when no supplements will be taken, will follow each period when supplements are administered. Total of nine specimens per person (approximately 45 individuals) will be tested.

Aspirin Works is one of the few laboratories in the nation who performs testing to detect Urinary Thromboxane B2 metabolites.  Because of the pending patent, additional information about the testing methods cannot be included.  However, this reference laboratory will be conducting the testing at a $20 per test for the CLS student’s project.  Since these tests are unique and state-of-the-art they are usually $100 per test.  We have averaged the number of the participants to 45 with nine samples per each participants.

Dark chocolate, Omega-3(fish oil) and aspirin in 81 mg, 162 mg and 325 mg concentrations will be used.  Sterile urine collection cups will be used to obtain the specimens, and sterile polypropylene tubes with preservative will be used for transporting frozen urine specimens.