Hierarchical organization of the hemostatic response to penetrating injuries in the mouse macrovasculature.
ABSTRACT: Essentials Methods were developed to image the hemostatic response in mouse femoral arteries in real time. Penetrating injuries produced thrombi consisting primarily of platelets. Similar to arterioles, a core-shell architecture of platelet activation occurs in the femoral artery. Differences from arterioles included slower platelet activation and reduced thrombin dependence.Background Intravital studies performed in the mouse microcirculation show that hemostatic thrombi formed after penetrating injuries develop a characteristic architecture in which a core of fully activated, densely packed platelets is overlaid with a shell of less activated platelets. Objective Large differences in hemodynamics and vessel wall biology distinguish arteries from arterioles. Here we asked whether these differences affect the hemostatic response and alter the impact of anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents. Methods Approaches previously developed for intravital imaging in the mouse microcirculation were adapted to the femoral artery, enabling real-time fluorescence imaging despite the markedly thicker vessel wall. Results Arterial thrombi initiated by penetrating injuries developed the core-and-shell architecture previously observed in the microcirculation. However, although platelet accumulation was greater in arterial thrombi, the kinetics of platelet activation were slower. Inhibiting platelet ADP P2Y12 receptors destabilized the shell and reduced thrombus size without affecting the core. Inhibiting thrombin with hirudin suppressed fibrin accumulation, but had little impact on thrombus size. Removing the platelet collagen receptor, glycoprotein VI, had no effect. Conclusions These results (i) demonstrate the feasibility of performing high-speed fluorescence imaging in larger vessels and (ii) highlight differences as well as similarities in the hemostatic response in the macro- and microcirculation. Similarities include the overall core-and-shell architecture. Differences include the slower kinetics of platelet activation and a smaller contribution from thrombin, which may be due in part to the greater thickness of the arterial wall and the correspondingly greater separation of tissue factor from the vessel lumen.
Project description:Platelets express ?2 members of the regulators of G protein signaling (RGS) family. Here, we have focused on the most abundant, RGS10, examining its impact on the hemostatic response in vivo and the mechanisms involved. We have previously shown that the hemostatic thrombi formed in response to penetrating injuries consist of a core of fully activated densely packed platelets overlaid by a shell of less-activated platelets responding to adenosine 5'-diphosphate (ADP) and thromboxane A<sub>2</sub> (TxA<sub>2</sub>). Hemostatic thrombi formed in RGS10<sup>-/-</sup> mice were larger than in controls, with the increase due to expansion of the shell but not the core. Clot retraction was slower, and average packing density was reduced. Deleting RGS10 had agonist-specific effects on signaling. There was a leftward shift in the dose/response curve for the thrombin receptor (PAR4) agonist peptide AYPGKF but no increase in the maximum response. This contrasted with ADP and TxA<sub>2</sub>, both of which evoked considerably greater maximum responses in RGS10<sup>-/-</sup> platelets with enhanced G<sub>q</sub>- and G<sub>i</sub>-mediated signaling. Shape change, which is G<sub>13</sub>-mediated, was unaffected. Finally, we found that free RGS10 levels in platelets are actively regulated. In resting platelets, RGS10 was bound to 2 scaffold proteins: spinophilin and 14-3-3?. Platelet activation caused an increase in free RGS10, as did the endothelium-derived platelet antagonist prostacyclin. Collectively, these observations show that RGS10 serves as an actively regulated node on the platelet signaling network, helping to produce smaller and more densely packed hemostatic thrombi with a greater proportion of fully activated platelets.
Project description:Essentials Platelet packing density in a hemostatic plug limits molecular movement to diffusion. A diffusion-dependent steep thrombin gradient forms radiating outwards from the injury site. Clot retraction affects the steepness of the gradient by increasing platelet packing density. Together, these effects promote hemostatic plug core formation and inhibit unnecessary growth. SUMMARY:Background Hemostasis studies performed in vivo have shown that hemostatic plugs formed after penetrating injuries are characterized by a core of highly activated, densely packed platelets near the injury site, covered by a shell of less activated and loosely packed platelets. Thrombin production occurs near the injury site, further activating platelets and starting the process of platelet mass retraction. Tightening of interplatelet gaps may then prevent the escape and exchange of solutes. Objectives To reconstruct the hemostatic plug macro- and micro-architecture and examine how platelet mass contraction regulates solute transport and solute concentration in the gaps between platelets. Methods Our approach consisted of three parts. First, platelet aggregates formed in vitro under flow were analyzed using scanning electron microscopy to extract data on porosity and gap size distribution. Second, a three-dimensional (3-D) model was constructed with features matching the platelet aggregates formed in vitro. Finally, the 3-D model was integrated with volume and morphology measurements of hemostatic plugs formed in vivo to determine how solutes move within the platelet plug microenvironment. Results The results show that the hemostatic mass is characterized by extremely narrow gaps, porosity values even smaller than previously estimated and stagnant plasma velocity. Importantly, the concentration of a chemical species released within the platelet mass increases as the gaps between platelets shrink. Conclusions Platelet mass retraction provides a physical mechanism to establish steep chemical concentration gradients that determine the extent of platelet activation and account for the core-and-shell architecture observed in vivo.
Project description:Achieving hemostasis following vascular injury requires the rapid accumulation of platelets and fibrin. Here we used a combination of confocal intravital imaging, genetically engineered mice, and antiplatelet agents to determine how variations in the extent of platelet activation following vascular injury arise from the integration of different elements of the platelet-signaling network. Two forms of penetrating injury were used to evoke the hemostatic response. Both produced a hierarchically organized structure in which a core of fully activated platelets was overlaid with an unstable shell of less-activated platelets. This structure emerged as hemostasis was achieved and persisted for at least 60 minutes following injury, its organization at least partly reflecting agonist concentration gradients. Thrombin activity and fibrin formation were found primarily in the innermost core. As proposed previously, greater packing density in the core facilitated contact-dependent signaling and limited entry of plasma-borne molecules visualized with fluorophores coupled to dextran and albumin. Blocking contact-dependent signaling or inhibiting thrombin reduced the size of the core, while the shell was heavily influenced by adenosine 5'-diphosphate and regulators of Gi2-mediated signaling. Thus, the hemostatic response is shown to produce a hierarchical structure arising, in part, from distinct elements of the platelet-signaling network.
Project description:The local microenvironment within an evolving hemostatic plug shapes the distribution of soluble platelet agonists, resulting in a gradient of platelet activation. We previously showed that thrombin activity at a site of vascular injury is spatially restricted, resulting in robust activation of a subpopulation of platelets in the hemostatic plug core. In contrast, adenosine 5'-diphosphate (ADP)/P2Y12 signaling contributes to the accumulation of partially activated, loosely packed platelets in a shell overlying the core. The contribution of the additional platelet agonists thromboxane A2 (TxA2) and epinephrine to this hierarchical organization was not previously shown. Using a combination of genetic and pharmacologic approaches coupled with real-time intravital imaging, we show that TxA2 signaling is critical and nonredundant with ADP/P2Y12 for platelet accumulation in the shell region but not required for full platelet activation in the hemostatic plug core, where thrombin activity is highest. In contrast, epinephrine signaling is dispensable even in the presence of a P2Y12 antagonist. Finally, dual P2Y12 and thrombin inhibition does not substantially inhibit hemostatic plug core formation any more than thrombin inhibition alone, providing further evidence that thrombin is the primary driver of platelet activation in this region. Taken together, these studies show for the first time how thrombin, P2Y12, and TxA2 signaling are coordinated during development of a hierarchical organization of hemostatic plugs in vivo and provide novel insights into the impact of dual antiplatelet therapy on hemostasis and thrombosis.
Project description:Biological and physical factors interact to modulate blood response in a wounded vessel, resulting in a hemostatic clot or an occlusive thrombus. Flow and pressure differential (?P) across the wound from the lumen to the extravascular compartment may impact hemostasis and the observed core/shell architecture. We examined physical and biological factors responsible for regulating thrombin-mediated clot growth.Using factor XIIa-inhibited human whole blood perfused in a microfluidic device over collagen/tissue factor at controlled wall shear rate and ?P, we found thrombin to be highly localized in the P-selectin(+) core of hemostatic clots. Increasing ?P from 9 to 29 mm Hg (wall shear rate=400 s(-1)) reduced P-selectin(+) core size and total clot size because of enhanced extravasation of thrombin. Blockade of fibrin polymerization with 5 mmol/L Gly-Pro-Arg-Pro dysregulated hemostasis by enhancing both P-selectin(+) core size and clot size at 400 s(-1) (20 mm Hg). For whole-blood flow (no Gly-Pro-Arg-Pro), the thickness of the P-selectin-negative shell was reduced under arterial conditions (2000 s(-1), 20 mm Hg). Consistent with the antithrombin-1 activity of fibrin implicated with Gly-Pro-Arg-Pro, anti-?'-fibrinogen antibody enhanced core-localized thrombin, core size, and overall clot size, especially at venous (100 s(-1)) but not arterial wall shear rates (2000 s(-1)). Pathological shear (15 000 s(-1)) and Gly-Pro-Arg-Pro synergized to exacerbate clot growth.Hemostatic clotting was dependent on core-localized thrombin that (1) triggered platelet P-selectin display and (2) was highly regulated by fibrin and the transclot ?P. Also, ?'-fibrinogen had a role in venous but not arterial conditions.
Project description:Sepsis is associated with thrombocytopenia and microvascular thrombosis. Studies have described platelets implication in this pathology but their kinetics of activation and behavior remain poorly known. We show in a mouse model of peritonitis, the appearance of platelet-rich thrombi in organ microvessels and organ damage. Complementary methods are necessary to characterize platelet activation during sepsis as circulating soluble markers and platelet-monocyte aggregates revealed early platelet activation, while surface activation markers were detected at later stage. A microfluidic based ex-vivo thrombosis assay demonstrated that platelets from septic mice have a prothrombotic behavior at shear rate encountered in microvessels. Interestingly, we found that even though phosphoinositide-3-kinase ?-deficient platelet mice formed less thrombi in liver microcirculation, peritoneal sepsis activates a platelet alternative pathway to compensate the otherwise mandatory role of this lipid-kinase to form stable thrombi at high shear rate. Platelets are rapidly activated during sepsis. Thrombocytopenia can be attributed in part to platelet-rich thrombi formation in capillaries and platelet-leukocytes interactions. Platelets from septic mice have a prothrombotic phenotype at a shear rate encountered in arterioles. Further studies are necessary to unravel molecular mechanisms leading to this prothrombotic state of platelets in order to guide the development of future treatments of polymicrobial sepsis.
Project description:Patients with hereditary or acquired hemolytic anemias have a high risk of developing in situ thrombosis of the pulmonary vasculature. While pulmonary thrombosis is a major morbidity associated with hemolytic disorders, the etiological mechanism underlying hemolysis-induced pulmonary thrombosis remains largely unknown. Here, we use intravital lung microscopy in mice to assess the pathogenesis of pulmonary thrombosis following deionized water-induced acute intravascular hemolysis. Acute hemolysis triggered the development of ?IIb?3-dependent platelet-rich thrombi in precapillary pulmonary arterioles, which led to the transient impairment of pulmonary blood flow. The hemolysis-induced pulmonary thrombosis was phenocopied with intravascular ADP- but not thrombin-triggered pulmonary thrombosis. Consistent with a mechanism involving ADP release from hemolyzing erythrocytes, the inhibition of platelet P2Y12 purinergic receptor signaling attenuated pulmonary thrombosis and rescued blood flow in the pulmonary arterioles of mice following intravascular hemolysis. These findings are the first in vivo studies to our knowledge to suggest that acute intravascular hemolysis promotes ADP-dependent platelet activation, leading to thrombosis in the precapillary pulmonary arterioles, and that thrombin generation most likely does not play a significant role in the pathogenesis of acute hemolysis-triggered pulmonary thrombosis.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Occlusive thrombi are not homogeneous in composition. The core of a thrombus is rich in activated platelets and fibrin while the outer shell contains resting platelets. This core is inaccessible to plasma proteins. We produced a fusion protein (targeted SERPIN-TaSER), consisting of a function-blocking V<sub>H</sub> H against glycoprotein Ibα (GPIbα) and a thrombin-inhibiting serine protease inhibitor (SERPIN; α1-antitrypsin <sup>355</sup> AIAR<sup>358</sup> ) to interfere with platelet-driven thrombin formation.<h4>Aim</h4>To evaluate the antithrombotic properties of TaSER.<h4>Methods</h4>Besides TaSER, we generated three analogous control variants with either a wild-type antitrypsin subunit, a non-targeting control V<sub>H</sub> H, or their combination. We investigated TaSER and controls in protease activity assays, (platelet-dependent) thrombin generation assays, and by western blotting. The effects of TaSER on platelet activation and von Willebrand factor (VWF) binding were studied by fluorescence-activated cell sorting, in agglutination studies, and in ATP secretion experiments. We studied the influence of TaSER in whole blood (1) on platelet adhesion on VWF, (2) aggregate formation on collagen, and (3) thrombus formation (after recalcification) on collagen and tissue factor.<h4>Results</h4>TaSER binds platelets and inhibits thrombin activity on the platelet surface. It blocks VWF binding and disassembles platelet agglutinates. TaSER delays tissue factor-triggered thrombin generation and ATP secretion in platelet-rich plasma in a targeted manner. In flow studies, TaSER interferes with platelet adhesion and aggregate formation due to GPIbα blockade and limits thrombus formation due to targeted inhibition of platelet-dependent thrombin activity.<h4>Conclusion</h4>The synergy between the individual properties of TaSER makes it a highly effective antithrombotic agent with possible clinical implications.
Project description:The use of fibrinolytic agents to prevent new thrombus formation is limited by an increased risk of bleeding due to lysis of hemostatic clots that prevent hemorrhage in damaged blood vessels. We sought to develop an agent that provides thromboprophylaxis without carrying a significant risk of causing systemic fibrinolysis or disrupting hemostatic clots. We previously showed that platelet (PLT) ? granule-delivered urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) is highly effective in preventing thrombosis, while being associated with little systemic fibrinolysis or bleeding. Here, we generated a chimeric prodrug composed of a single-chain version of the variable region of an anti-?IIb?3 mAb fused to a thrombin-activatable, low-molecular-weight pro-uPA (PLT/uPA-T). PLT/uPA-T recognizes human ?IIb?3 on both quiescent and activated platelets and is enzymatically activated specifically by thrombin. We found that this prodrug binds tightly to human platelets even after gel filtration, has a prolonged half-life in mice transgenic for human ?IIb compared with that of uPA-T, and prevents clot formation in a microfluidic system. Importantly, in two murine injury models, PLT/uPA-T did not lyse preexisting clots, even when administration was delayed by as little as 10 minutes, while it concurrently prevented the development of nascent thrombi. Thus, PLT/uPA-T represents the prototype of a platelet-targeted thromboprophylactic agent that selectively targets nascent over preexisting thrombi.
Project description:Sulfur mustard (SM) is a chemical warfare agent. When inhaled, SM causes significant injury to the respiratory tract. Although the mechanism involved in acute airway injury after SM inhalation has been well described previously, the mechanism of SM's contribution to distal lung vascular injury is not well understood. We hypothesized that acute inhalation of vaporized SM causes activated systemic coagulation with subsequent pulmonary vascular thrombi formation after SM inhalation exposure. Sprague Dawley rats inhaled SM ethanolic vapor (3.8?mg/kg). Barium/gelatin CT pulmonary angiograms were performed to assess for pulmonary vascular thrombi burden. Lung immunohistochemistry was performed for common procoagulant markers including fibrin(ogen), von Willebrand factor, and CD42d in control and SM-exposed lungs. Additionally, systemic levels of d-dimer and platelet aggregometry after adenosine diphosphate- and thrombin-stimulation were measured in plasma after SM exposure. In SM-exposed lungs, chest CT angiography demonstrated a significant decrease in the distal pulmonary vessel density assessed at 6?h postexposure. Immunohistochemistry also demonstrated increased intravascular fibrin(ogen), vascular von Willebrand factor, and platelet CD42d in the distal pulmonary vessels (<200 µm diameter). Circulating d-dimer levels were significantly increased (p < .001) at 6, 9, and 12?h after SM inhalation versus controls. Platelet aggregation was also increased in both adenosine diphosphate - (p < .01) and thrombin- (p < .001) stimulated platelet-rich plasma after SM inhalation. Significant pulmonary vascular thrombi formation was evident in distal pulmonary arterioles following SM inhalation in rats assessed by CT angiography and immunohistochemistry. Enhanced systemic platelet aggregation and activated systemic coagulation with subsequent thrombi formation likely contributed to pulmonary vessel occlusion.