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Thromb Haemost. 2001 Mar;85(3):514-20.

Rho-kinase is involved in the sustained phosphorylation of myosin and the irreversible platelet aggregation induced by PAR1 activating peptide.

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  • 1INSERM, Unité 326, Institut Fédératif de Recherche 30, H pital Purpan, Toulouse, France.


We have addressed the role of Rho-kinase in the different steps of thrombin receptor agonist peptide (TRAP)-induced platelet activation. Interestingly, under physiological conditions, incubation of platelets with increasing concentrations of the specific Rho-kinase inhibitor Y-27632 resulted in a dose-dependent reversion of the aggregation induced by 10 microM TRAP, without affecting serotonin secretion. Addition of Y-27632 after three minutes of TRAP stimulation, when the maximal aggregation was reached, resulted in a rapid disaggregation of platelets. Accordingly, the early peak of myosin light chain (MLC) phosphorylation induced by TRAP was not affected by Y-27632 but its sustained phosphorylation, observed during the irreversible phase of aggregation, was dependent of Rho-kinase activity. The rapid decrease in MLC phosphorylation upon Y-27632 treatment correlated well with the specific disappearance of myosin heavy chain from the cytoskeleton and preceded platelet disaggregation. Finally, we provide evidence that secreted ADP, known to play a key role in TRAP-induced irreversible phase of aggregation, was involved in the sustained MLC phosphorylation through Rho-kinase and could be replaced by epinephrine.

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