Upon vessel injury, platelets become activated and rapidly reorganize their actin cytoskeleton to adhere to the site of endothelial damage, triggering the formation of a fibrin-rich plug to prevent further blood loss. Inactivation of Pdlim7 provides the new perspective that regulation of actin cytoskeletal changes in platelets is dependent on the encoded PDZ-LIM protein. Loss-of-function of Pdlim7 triggers hypercoagulopathy and causes significant perinatal lethality in mice. Our in vivo and in vitro studies reveal that Pdlim7 is dynamically distributed along actin fibers, and lack of Pdlim7 leads to a marked inability to rearrange the actin cytoskeleton. Specifically, the absence of Pdlim7 prevents platelets from bundling actin fibers into a concentric ring that defines the round spread shape of activated platelets. Similarly, in mouse embryonic fibroblasts, loss of Pdlim7 abolishes the formation of stress fibers needed to adopt the typical elongated fibroblast shape. In addition to revealing a fundamental cell biological role in actin cytoskeletal organization, we also demonstrate a function of Pdlim7 in regulating the cycling between the GTP/GDP-bound states of Arf6. The small GTPase Arf6 is an essential factor required for actin dynamics, cytoskeletal rearrangements, and platelet activation. Consistent with our findings of significantly elevated initial F-actin ratios and subsequent morphological aberrations, loss of Pdlim7 causes a shift in balance towards an increased Arf6-GTP level in resting platelets. These findings identify a new Pdlim7-Arf6 axis controlling actin dynamics and implicate Pdlim7 as a primary endogenous regulator of platelet-dependent hemostasis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)