Orchestration of Primary Hemostasis by Platelet and Endothelial Lysosome-Related Organelles

Ellie Karampini, Ruben Bierings, Jan Voorberg

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Megakaryocyte-derived platelets and endothelial cells store their hemostatic cargo in α- and δ-granules and Weibel-Palade bodies, respectively. These storage granules belong to the lysosome-related organelles (LROs), a heterogeneous group of organelles that are rapidly released following agonist-induced triggering of intracellular signaling pathways. Following vascular injury, endothelial Weibel-Palade bodies release their content into the vascular lumen and promote the formation of long VWF (von Willebrand factor) strings that form an adhesive platform for platelets. Binding to VWF strings as well as exposed subendothelial collagen activates platelets resulting in the release of α- and δ-granules, which are crucial events in formation of a primary hemostatic plug. Biogenesis and secretion of these LROs are pivotal for the maintenance of proper hemostasis. Several bleeding disorders have been linked to abnormal generation of LROs in megakaryocytes and endothelial cells. Recent reviews have emphasized common pathways in the biogenesis and biological properties of LROs, focusing mainly on melanosomes. Despite many similarities, LROs in platelet and endothelial cells clearly possess distinct properties that allow them to provide a highly coordinated and synergistic contribution to primary hemostasis by sequentially releasing hemostatic cargo. In this brief review, we discuss in depth the known regulators of α- and δ-granules in megakaryocytes/platelets and Weibel-Palade bodies in endothelial cells, starting from transcription factors that have been associated with granule formation to protein complexes that promote granule maturation. In addition, we provide a detailed view on the interplay between platelet and endothelial LROs in controlling hemostasis as well as their dysfunction in LRO related bleeding disorders.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1441-1453
Number of pages13
JournalArteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology
Issue number6
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • endothelial cells
  • hemostasis
  • lysosome-related organelles
  • megakaryocytes
  • platelets
  • von Willebrand factor

Cite this