Characterization of the leukocyte-and platelet-rich fibrin block: Release of growth factors, cellular content, and structure

Ana B. Castro*, Simone Cortellini, Andy Temmerman, Xin Li, Nelson Pinto, Wim Teughels, Marc Quirynen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Purpose: The leukocyte- and platelet-rich fibrin block (L-PRF block) is a composite graft that combines a xenograft that is acting as a scaffold with L-PRF membranes that serve as a bioactive nodule with osteoinductive capacity. This study evaluated the properties of the L-PRF block and its components in terms of release of growth factors, cellular content, and structure. Materials and Methods: The concentration of transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), platelet-derived growth factor-AB (PDGF-AB), and bone morphogenetic protein-1 (BMP-1) released by an L-PRF membrane and an L-PRF block were examined with ELISA for five time intervals (0 to 4 hours, 4 hours to 1 day, 1 to 3 days, 3 to 7 days, 7 to 14 days). Those levels in L-PRF exudate and liquid fibrinogen were also evaluated. The cellular content of the liquid fibrinogen, L-PRF membrane, and exudate was calculated. The L-PRF block was also analyzed by means of a microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) scan and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Results: TGF-β1 was the most released growth factor after 14 days, followed by PDGF-AB, VEGF, and BMP-1. All L-PRF blocks constantly released the four growth factors up to 14 days. L-PRF membrane and liquid fibrinogen presented high concentrations of leukocytes and platelets. The micro-CT and SEM images revealed the bone substitute particles surrounded by platelets and leukocytes, embedded in a dense fibrin network. Conclusion: The L-PRF block consists of deproteinized bovine bone mineral particles surrounded by platelets and leukocytes, embedded in a fibrin network that releases growth factors up to 14 days.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)855-864
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Implants
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge Dr Martine Pauwels and Dr Vera Slomka for their support in the performance of the ELISA experiments. They would also like to thank Dr Wim Coucke for his help in the statistical analysis. The Department of Periodontology and the Department of Prosthetic Dentistry at KU Leuven are holders of a research chair from Intra-Lock International, devoted to optimizing osseointegration. The consumables of this project were paid by this chair. The authors have clearly stated that there are no conflicts of interest in connection with this article.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 by Quintessence Publishing Co Inc.


  • Blood platelets
  • Cell count
  • Fibrinogen
  • Growth factors
  • Scanning electron microscopy
  • Tissue engineering


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