Regulation of endothelial cell permeability by platelet-derived extracellular vesicles

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BACKGROUNDPlatelet (Plt)-derived extracellular vesicles (Plt-EVs) have hemostatic properties similar to Plts. In addition to hemostasis, Plts also function to stabilize the vasculature and maintain endothelial cell (EC) barrier integrity. We hypothesized that Plt-EVs would inhibit vascular EC permeability, similar to fresh Plts. To investigate this hypothesis, we used in vitro and in vivo models of vascular endothelial compromise and bleeding.METHODSIn the vitro model, Plt-EVs were isolated by ultracentrifugation and characterized for Plt markers and particle size distribution. Effects of Plts and Plt-EVs on endothelial barrier function were assessed by transendothelial electrical resistance measurements and histological analysis of endothelial junction proteins. Hemostatic potential of Plt-EVs and Plts was assessed by multiple electrode Plt aggregometry. Using an in vivo model, the effects of Plts and Plt-EVs on vascular permeability and bleeding were assessed in non-obese diabetic-severe combined immunodeficient (NOD-SCID) mice by an established Miles assay of vascular permeability and a tail snip bleeding assay.RESULTSIn the in vitro model, Plt-EVs displayed exosomal size distribution and expressed Plt-specific surface markers. Platelets and Plt-EVs decreased EC permeability and restored EC junctions after thrombin challenge. Multiplate aggregometry revealed that Plt-EVs enhanced thrombin receptor–activating peptide-mediated aggregation of whole blood, whereas Plts enhanced thrombin receptor–activating peptide–, arachidonic acid–, collagen-, and adenosine diphosphate–mediated aggregation. In the in vivo model, Plt-EVs are equivalent to Plts in attenuating vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-A–induced vascular permeability and uncontrolled blood loss in a tail snip hemorrhage model.CONCLUSIONOur study is the first to report that Plt-EVs might provide a feasible product for transfusion in trauma patients to attenuate bleeding, inhibit vascular permeability, and mitigate the endotheliopathy of trauma.

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