Expression of receptors for plasminogen activators on endothelial cell surface depends on their origin

H. C. Kwaan*, J. Wang, I. Weiss

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Receptors for plasminogen activators present on endothelial cell (EC) surface regulate local plasmin activity. Plasmin generation by human ECs, derived from cerebral cortex, skin and lung, iliac artery, iliac vein, aorta and coronary artery, was studied. The respective ECs were treated with recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rt-PA) or with recombinant urokinase-type plasminogen activator (ru-PA), washed, plasminogen added and the plasmin generated then assayed. The largest amounts of plasmin were generated by cerebral ECs, under baseline conditions or after exposure to rt-PA or ru-PA (P < 0.0001). Exposure to rt-PA also resulted in more plasmin generation than ru-PA in the cerebral ECs (P < 0.0001) but not in the other ECs. Heparin enhanced plasmin generation by both rt-PA and ru-PA. Specific antibody against annexin II, a t-PA receptor, blocked plasmin generation by rt-PA. Western blotting showed higher amounts of annexin II on the cell membrane in cerebral ECs. This suggests that expression of annexin II in ECs depends on their location, being greatest in cerebral ECs. In contrast, expression of u-PA receptor was the same for all ECs. This has implications for higher risk of intracranial bleeding during thrombolytic therapy, and for a role of t-PA in neurological development and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)306-312
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2004


  • Annexin II
  • Plasmin generation
  • t-PA
  • u-PA
  • u-PA receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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