Platelet Mechanotransduction

Caroline E. Hansen, Yongzhi Qiu, Owen J.T. McCarty, Wilbur A. Lam

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The vasculature is a dynamic environment in which blood platelets constantly survey the endothelium for sites of vessel damage. The formation of a mechanically coherent hemostatic plug to prevent blood loss relies on a coordinated series of ligand-receptor interactions governing the recruitment, activation, and aggregation of platelets. The physical biology of each step is distinct in that the recruitment of platelets depends on the mechanosensing of the platelet receptor glycoprotein Ib for the adhesive protein von Willebrand factor, whereas platelet activation and aggregation are responsive to the mechanical forces sensed at adhesive junctions between platelets and at the platelet-matrix interface. Herein we take a biophysical perspective to discuss the current understanding of platelet mechanotransduction as well as the measurement techniques used to quantify the physical biology of platelets in the context of thrombus formation under flow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)253-275
Number of pages23
JournalAnnual Review of Biomedical Engineering
StatePublished - Jun 4 2018


  • force
  • mechanosensing
  • mechanotransduction
  • platelet
  • shear
  • substrate stiffness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biomedical Engineering


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