Platelets: A New Cell Type in Liver Physiology

  • Mickael Lesurtel
  • Pierre-Alain ClavienEmail author


Platelets are the smallest type of blood cells, which are only fragments of bone marrow megakaryocyte cytoplasm and are biconvex discs, approximately 3 μm in diameter. The development of megakaryocytes and production of platelets are unique processes. Megakaryocyte maturation involves nuclear duplication without cell division, resulting in giant cells. Cytoplasmic organelles are organized into domains representing nascent platelets, demarcated by a network of invaginated plasma membranes. Within the marrow, megakaryocytes are localized next to the sinusoidal walls and this facilitates the exit of large segments of cytoplasm into the circulation. The fragmentation of megakaryocyte cytoplasm into individual platelets then results from the shear forces of circulating blood [1]. Thrombopoietin (TPO) is the dominant hormone controlling megakaryocyte development, but many cytokines and hormones take part, including interleukins 3, 6, and 11 [2].


Liver Fibrosis Kupffer Cell Liver Regeneration Partial Hepatectomy Warm Ischemia 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

List of Abbreviations


5-hydroxytryptamine = serotonin


5-hydroxyindol acetic acid


5 hydroxytryptophan


cytotoxic T lymphocytes response


epidermal growth factor


hepatocyte growth factor


hepatic stellate cells




nonalcoholic steatohepatitis


platelet-derived growth factor


serotonin reuptake transporter


transforming growth factor-β




tryptophan hydroxylase


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Swiss HPB Center, Department of Visceral and Transplant SurgeryUniversity Hospital of ZurichZürichSwitzerland

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