Figure 1. Schematic representation of platelet-leukocyte aggregates during thrombo-inflammation. Soluble mediators released by activated leukocytes and platelets act systemically, causing injury to remote organs such as the liver, lungs, and heart.
Platelet-leukocyte aggregates
Figure 2. In vivo representation of platelet-leukocyte aggregates in the mesentery microvasculature.

Mesenteric ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) elicits a local intestinal inflammatory response causing cellular and vascular dysfunction. Once the intestinal barrier becomes compromised, activated platelets and leukocytes are released from the post-ischemic mesentery into the circulation triggering a systemic inflammatory response compromising the distal organs (figure 1). Recent studies in our lab have emphasized the prominent role platelet alpha granules have in not only hemostasis but inflammation too by facilitating the adhesion of circulating leukocytes to platelets and releasing pro-inflammatory and pro-coagulant factors that regulate leukocyte function in the pathophysiological responses of thrombo-inflammation.

Katrina Bark, BS

Research Lab Manager

Katrina Bark is the research lab manager in the Di Paola Lab. Bark’s research interests include platelet function and platelet-related disorders, micro-surgery, microfluidics, thrombo-inflammation and investigation of novel antithrombotics and thrombolytics. No one is quite sure what Bark does when not handling popcorn mice in the lab, but it is rumored that she is secretly a robot.