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Blood. 2009 Sep 10;114(11):2290-8. doi: 10.1182/blood-2009-04-216473. Epub 2009 Jul 15.

Platelet factor 4 regulates megakaryopoiesis through low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1) on megakaryocytes.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


Platelet factor 4 (PF4) is a negative regulator of megakaryopoiesis, but its mechanism of action had not been addressed. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor-related protein-1 (LRP1) has been shown to mediate endothelial cell responses to PF4 and so we tested this receptor's importance in PF4's role in megakaryopoiesis. We found that LRP1 is absent from megakaryocyte-erythrocyte progenitor cells, is maximally present on large, polyploidy megakaryocytes, and near absent on platelets. Blocking LRP1 with either receptor-associated protein (RAP), an antagonist of LDL family member receptors, or specific anti-LRP1 antibodies reversed the inhibition of megakaryocyte colony growth by PF4. In addition, using shRNA to reduce LRP1 expression was able to restore megakaryocyte colony formation in bone marrow isolated from human PF4-overexpressing mice (hPF4(High)). Further, shRNA knockdown of LRP1 expression was able to limit the effects of PF4 on megakaryopoiesis. Finally, infusion of RAP into hPF4(High) mice was able to increase baseline platelet counts without affecting other lineages, suggesting that this mechanism is important in vivo. These studies extend our understanding of PF4's negative paracrine effect in megakaryopoiesis and its potential clinical implications as well as provide insights into the biology of LRP1, which is transiently expressed during megakaryopoiesis.

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