Abstract 4009

Poster Board III-945

Platelets are anucleate cells that are not amenable to traditional forward genetic analysis. In collaboration with the Broad Institute Probe Development Center, we have performed a chemical genetic analysis of platelet activation. Chemical genetics involves exposure of cells to a library of small molecules, identification of compounds that produce a phenotype of interest, and determination of the target of these small molecules. We have used an assay designed both to identify allosteric inhibitors of Protease Activated Receptor-1 (PAR1) and to find inhibitors that selectively target granule release. This assay monitors dense granule secretion mediated by SFLLRN, a PAR1-specific agonist, using a luciferase-based assay system to detect ADP/ATP release. For primary screening, over 300,000 compounds were assayed in duplicate using freshly outdated platelet-rich plasma supplied by several blood banks across the United States. Computational analyses of the primary data demonstrated that approximately 0.2% of compounds showed ≥50% inhibition relative to maximally inhibitory concentrations of the known antiplatelet agent, cilostazol. Secondary screening using 8-point dose response curves were performed on the 629 inhibitory compounds, 742 compounds with inconclusive activity (e.g., ambiguous duplicates in primary screening), and 213 structural analogs of active compounds. These assays identified 367 active compounds with IC50s ≤10 micromolar. Counter screening to exclude luciferase inhibitors demonstrated 137 small molecules that inhibited PAR1-mediated ATP/ADP release without significant inhibition of luciferase. Database mining using PubChem and CAS search engines was performed to assess the selectivity of active compounds. Twenty eight compounds were selected for further testing based on their IC50s in confirmatory assays, lack of activity in unrelated bioassays, and chemical structure. Known platelet inhibitors were excluded. Of the 28 compounds, 16 compounds potently inhibited SFLLRN-induced alpha-granule release from washed platelets, as monitored by P-selectin expression. IC50s for these compounds ranged from <0.3 to 1 micromolar. None of the selected compounds that failed to inhibit alpha-granule release demonstrated significant inhibition of SFLLRN-induced 14C-serotonin release at 10 micromolar. Ongoing studies are directed at selecting best candidates from among the 16 confirmed inhibitory compounds to develop as biological probes that target either PAR1 activation or distal steps in granule secretion.


No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.

Author notes


Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.