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Plasmodium falciparum-derived histidine-rich protein II (HRPII) has been shown to inhibit heparin-dependent anticoagulant activity of antithrombin (AT) and induce inflammation in vitro and in vivo. In a recent study, we showed that HRPII interacts with the AT-binding vascular glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) not only to disrupt the barrier-permeability function of endothelial cells but also to inhibit the antiinflammatory signaling function of AT. Here we investigated the mechanisms of the proinflammatory function of HRPII and the protective activity of AT in cellular and animal models. We found that AT competitively inhibits the GAG-dependent HRPII-mediated activation of NF-κB and expression of intercellular cell adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM1) in endothelial cells. Furthermore, AT inhibits HRPII-mediated histone H3 citrullination and neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation in HL60 cells and freshly isolated human neutrophils. In vivo, HRPII induced Mac1 expression on blood neutrophils, MPO release in plasma, neutrophil infiltration, and histone H3 citrullination in the lung tissues. HRPII also induced endothelial cell activation as measured by increased ICAM1 expression and elevated vascular permeability in the lungs. AT effectively inhibited HRPII-mediated neutrophil infiltration, NET formation, and endothelial cell activation in vivo. AT also inhibited HRPII-meditated deposition of platelets and fibrin(ogen) in the lungs and circulating level of von Willebrand factor in the plasma. We conclude that AT exerts protective effects against pathogenic effects of P falciparum-derived HRPII in both cellular and animal models. © 2022 by The American Society of Hematology. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), permitting only noncommercial, nonderivative use with attribution. All other rights reserved.


Indranil Biswas, Sumith R Panicker, Hemant Giri, Xiaofeng S Cai, Alireza R Rezaie. Antithrombin protects against Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich protein II-mediated inflammation and coagulation. Blood advances. 2022 Feb 08;6(3):931-945

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PMID: 34768285

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