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Table 1 Different methods for MPs measurement

From: Microparticles in kidney diseases: focus on kidney transplantation

Assay Method Advantages Disadvantages
■ Flow cytometry
■ (fluorescence-activated cell sorting)
MP counting
■ Utilization of fluorescence probes and light-scattering properties
■ MPs in suspension
■ Available to most research facilities
■ Rapid
■ Multiple antigens may be analyzed in a single sample
■ MPs analyzed on an individual basis
■ The gold standard of human cell-derived MPs
■ Antibody binding might not occur attributable to the small fraction of surface antigens available
■ Size limitations and not able to detect microvesicles with diameters less than 300–400 nm
■ Immunoassays ■ ELISA-based MP capture assays by annexin V as a means of capturing phospholipids or antibodies to specific blood MP membrane antigens or antibodies to nonspecific antigens (detection antibody) ■ Available at most research institutions
■ Alternative to flow cytometry approach
■ Less costly than flow cytometry
■ Not restricted by size
■ Analysis done in batches
■ No size determination possible
■ Quantifies based on a single antigen
■ Functional assays ■ Procoagulant or prothrombinase activity ■ Available at most research institutions
■ Provides an indication of biological activity
■ The inability to quantitate the MPs
■ Analysis done in batches, no size determination possible, measures procoagulant activity—not specific MP detection
■ Atomic force microscopy ■ Scanning of MPs utilizing specialized microscope ■ MP size detection very accurate
■ Allows for 3D structure of MP
■ Quantitation of MPs
■ Allows for very accurate sizing of MPs
■ Allows for 3D view of MP structure
■ May be used for quantification
■ Nanoparticle tracking ■ Light-scattering properties of MPs detected, video capture of MP motion ■ MP size detection, quantitation of MPs ■ Technology not readily available, long analysis times, costly
  1. Elisa enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay, MPs microparticles