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Investigating and imaging platelets in inflammation


Blood platelets are best known for their roles in hemostasis and thrombosis, but platelets also make important contributions to inflammation, immunity, and inflammatory resolution. Experiments involving depletion, genetic modification, and live imaging of platelets in animal models have increased our mechanistic understanding of platelet contributions to inflammation. In this minireview, we provide a critical overview of experimental techniques for manipulating and imaging platelets in inflammation models. We then highlight studies using innovative approaches to elucidate molecular mechanisms through which platelet subsets, platelet Fc gamma receptors, and pro-resolution platelet functions influence inflammatory responses. We also propose future technologies and research directions which might move us closer to harnessing of platelet functions for improved therapeutic modulation of inflammatory diseases.

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