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J Biol Chem. 1999 Oct 1;274(40):28293-300.

Platelet shape change is mediated by both calcium-dependent and -independent signaling pathways. Role of p160 Rho-associated coiled-coil-containing protein kinase in platelet shape change.

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Department of Pharmacology, Temple University Medical School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19140, USA.


Platelets undergo shape change upon activation with agonists. During shape change, disc-shaped platelets turn into spiculated spheres with protruding filopodia. When agonist-induced cytosolic Ca(2+) increases were prevented using the cytosolic Ca(2+) chelator, 5, 5'-dimethyl-bis-(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (5, 5'-dimethyl-BAPTA), platelets still underwent shape change, although the onset was delayed and the initial rate was dramatically decreased. In the absence of cytosolic Ca(2+), agonist-stimulated myosin light chain phosphorylation was significantly inhibited. The myosin light chain was maximally phosphorylated at 2 s in control platelets compared with 30 s in 5,5'-dimethyl-BAPTA-treated platelets. ADP, thrombin, or U46619-induced Ca(2+)-independent platelet shape change was significantly reduced by staurosporine, a nonselective kinase inhibitor, by the selective p160 Rho-associated coiled-coil-containing protein kinase inhibitor Y-27632, or by HA 1077. Both Y-27632 and HA 1077 reduced peak levels of ADP-induced platelet shape change and myosin light chain phosphorylation in control platelets. In 5,5'-dimethyl-BAPTA-treated platelets, Y-27632 and HA 1077 completely abolished both ADP-induced platelet shape change and myosin light chain phosphorylation. Our results indicate that Ca(2+)/calmodulin-stimulated myosin light chain kinase and p160 Rho-associated coiled-coil-containing protein kinase independently contribute to myosin light chain phosphorylation and platelet shape change, through Ca(2+)-sensitive and Ca(2+)-insensitive pathways, respectively.

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