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J Biomed Sci. 1998;5(3):153-72.

Thromboxanes: synthase and receptors.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences and Center for the Genetics of Asthma and Other Complex Diseases, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore 21201, USA.


Thromboxane A2 is a biologically potent arachidonate metabolite through the cyclooxygenase pathway. It induces platelet aggregation and smooth muscle contraction and may promote mitogenesis and apoptosis of other cells. Its roles in physiological and pathological conditions have been widely documented. The enzyme that catalyzes its synthesis, thromboxane A2 synthase, and the receptors that mediate its actions, thromboxane A2 receptors, are the two key components critical for the functioning of this potent autacoid. Recent molecular biological studies have revealed the structure-function relationship and gene organizations of these proteins as well as genetic and epigenetic factors modulating their gene expression. Future investigation should shed light on detailed molecular signaling events specifying thromboxane A2 actions, and the genetic underpinning of the enzyme and the receptors in health and disease.

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