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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2011, 12(4), 2125-2137; doi:10.3390/ijms12042125

Calpain Activator Dibucaine Induces Platelet Apoptosis

1 School of Biological Science and Medical Engineering, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, 37 Xueyuan Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China 2 The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Jiangsu Institute of Hematology, Key Laboratory of Thrombosis and Hemostasis, Ministry of Health, Suzhou, 215007, China
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 February 2011 / Revised: 6 March 2011 / Accepted: 18 March 2011 / Published: 25 March 2011
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics)
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Calcium-dependent calpains are a family of cysteine proteases that have been demonstrated to play key roles in both platelet glycoprotein Ibα shedding and platelet activation and altered calpain activity is associated with thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. Calpain activators induce apoptosis in several types of nucleated cells. However, it is not clear whether calpain activators induce platelet apoptosis. Here we show that the calpain activator dibucaine induced several platelet apoptotic events including depolarization of the mitochondrial inner transmembrane potential, up-regulation of Bax and Bak, down-regulation of Bcl-2 and Bcl-XL, caspase-3 activation and phosphatidylserine exposure. Platelet apoptosis elicited by dibucaine was not affected by the broad spectrum metalloproteinase inhibitor GM6001. Furthermore, dibucaine did not induce platelet activation as detected by P-selectin expression and PAC-1 binding. However, platelet aggregation induced by ristocetin or α-thrombin, platelet adhesion and spreading on von Willebrand factor were significantly inhibited in platelets treated with dibucaine. Taken together, these data indicate that dibucaine induces platelet apoptosis and platelet dysfunction.
Keywords: platelets; calpain; dibucaine; platelet apoptosis; platelet activation platelets; calpain; dibucaine; platelet apoptosis; platelet activation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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Zhang, W.; Liu, J.; Sun, R.; Zhao, L.; Du, J.; Ruan, C.; Dai, K. Calpain Activator Dibucaine Induces Platelet Apoptosis. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2011, 12, 2125-2137.

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