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This review highlights recent advancements in understanding the regulation of platelet numbers, focusing on mechanisms by which carbohydrates (glycans) link platelet removal with platelet production in the bone marrow in health and disease. This review is focused on the role of carbohydrates, specifically sialic acid moieties, as a central mediator of platelet clearance. We discuss recently identified novel mechanisms of carbohydrate-mediated platelet removal and carbohydrate-binding receptors that mediate platelet removal. The platelet production rate by megakaryocytes and removal kinetics controls the circulating platelet count. Alterations in either process can lead to thrombocytopenia (low platelet count) or thrombocytosis (high platelet count) are associated with the risk of bleeding or overt thrombus formation and serious complications. Thus, regulation of a steady-state platelet count is vital in preventing adverse events. There are few mechanisms delineated that shed light on carbohydrates' role in the complex and massive platelet removal process. This review focuses on carbohydrate-related mechanisms that contribute to the control of platelet numbers. Copyright © 2021 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.


Leonardo Rivadeneyra, Hervé Falet, Karin M Hoffmeister. Circulating platelet count and glycans. Current opinion in hematology. 2021 Nov 01;28(6):431-437

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PMID: 34605444

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