Leveraging Turbidity and Thromboelastography for Complementary Clot Characterization

Ziqian Zeng1,2, Tanmaye Nallan Chakravarthula1,2, Nathan J. Alves1,2
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Thrombosis is a leading cause of death worldwide. Fibrin(ogen) is the protein primarily responsible for clot formation or thrombosis. Therefore, characterizing fibrin clot formation is beneficial to the study of thrombosis. Turbidity and thromboelastography (TEG) are both widely utilized in vitro assays for monitoring clot formation. Turbidity dynamically measures the light transmittance through a fibrin clot structure via a spectrometer and is often used in research laboratories. TEG is a specialized viscoelastic technique that directly measures blood clot strength and is primarily utilized in clinical settings to assess patients' hemostasis. With the help of these two tools, this study describes a method for characterizing an in vitro fibrin clot using a simplified fibrinogen/thrombin clot model. Data trends across both techniques were compared under various clotting conditions. Human and bovine fibrin clots were formed side-by-side in this study as bovine clotting factors are often used as substitutes to human clotting factors in clinical and research settings. Results demonstrate that TEG and turbidity track clot formation via two distinct methods and when utilized together provide complementary clot strength and fiber structural information across diverse clotting conditions.