A prospective comparison of HLA-epitope-matched and standard HLA-matched platelet transfusions in raising the platelet count increment in alloimmunised thrombocytopenic patients with aplastic anaemia or myelodysplastic syndrome. A crossover superiority trial.

Chief investigator: Professor Judith Marsh
Location/Institution: Kings College London
Funder: NHSBT Research and Development Committee
NHSBT Research Theme: Patient Blood Management


The HLA-Epitope trial was a double-blind crossover trial designed to compare the effect of HLA Epitope-matched (HEM) with standard HLA-matched (HSM) prophylactic platelet transfusions in raising the platelet count increment after transfusion in alloimmunised, thrombocytopenic patients with aplastic anaemia, myelodysplastic syndrome or acute myeloid leukaemia.

The trial tested whether a new way of matching platelets for transfusion was better in patients with blood disorders. The study compared a new way of selecting platelets for transfusion with the method currently in use. It aimed to provide the evidence to support a new method of matching donors and patients; making it easier to find well matched platelets and meet patient needs.

The study successfully met its recruitment target and the data is currently being analysed.

Read more on the NHSBT Clinical Trials Unit website