Research press release


Nature Medicine

Platelets promote closure of vessels in newborns


動脈管は胚発生の際に必要な胎児血管で、誕生後すぐに閉鎖する。これが閉じないと、肺高血圧症や心不全につながる。動脈管がどのような仕組みで閉鎖するのかはわかっていなかったが、今回S Massbergたちが、マウスの動脈管閉鎖に血小板(血液凝固にかかわる細胞)が重要な役割を果たすことを明らかにした。


Platelets are crucial for the closure of a blood vessel that, if left open after birth, can lead to disease, according to a report online this week in Nature Medicine. The finding helps to advance our understanding of an important disorder which is seen in newborns.

The ductus arteriosus is a fetal blood vessel that is essential during embryonic development and closes promptly after birth. If it doesn’t close, patients develop pulmonary hypertension and heart failure. How the ductus arteriosus manages to close has remained unclear, but Steffen Massberg and his colleagues show that platelets ― the cells responsible for blood clotting ― play an essential role in its closure in mice.

The team found that platelets are recruited to the ductus arteriosus during closure, promoting the formation of a clot as this blood vessel contracts. In mice with defective platelet function, the ductus arteriosus failed to close, resulting in a condition similar to that found in the human disease: increased blood flow in the lung and excessive growth of the right ventricle of the heart. They also showed, in a clinical study in premature babies, that not having enough platelets in the blood was associated with a failure of the ductus arteriosus to close.

doi: 10.1038/nm.2060


メールマガジンリストの「Nature 関連誌今週のハイライト」にチェックをいれていただきますと、毎週各ジャーナルからの最新の「注目のハイライト」をまとめて皆様にお届けいたします。