Febrile responses to platelet transfusions are common but some can be life-threatening and the cause of these reactions is largely unknown. In June 23
Human platelets contain preformed CD40 ligand that can be expelled after activation to initiate the wound healing process. The CD40 ligand is associated with the production of proinflammatory prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), the key inducer of fever in man.
They speculate that keeping the release of CD40 ligand to a minimum, or removing free CD40 ligand before transfusion, might effectively reduce adverse events following platelet transfusions. In addition, individuals whose platelets are especially rich in CD40 ligand might be excluded as donors for transfusions.