Emerging evidence suggests that platelets, cytoplasmic fragments derived from megakaryocytes, can no longer be considered just as mediators in hemostasis and coagulation processes, but as key modulators of immunity. Platelets have received increasing attention as the emergence of new methodologies has allowed the characterization of their components and functions in the immune continuum. Platelet activation in infectious and allergic lung diseases has been well documented and associated with bacterial infections reproduced in several animal models of pulmonary bacterial infections. Direct interactions between platelets and bacteria have been associated with increased pulmonary platelet accumulation, whereas bacterial-derived toxins have also been reported to modulate platelet function. Recently, platelets have been found extravascular in the lungs of patients with asthma, and in animal models of allergic lung inflammation. Their ability to interact with immune and endothelial cells and secrete immune mediators makes them one attractive target for biomarker identification that will help characterize their contribution to lung diseases. Here, we present an original review of the last advances in the platelet field with a focus on the contribution of platelets to respiratory infections and allergic-mediated diseases.
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