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Platelet dysfunction in atherothrombotic diseases


Academic year 2019/2020

Teaching staff
Prof. Giuseppe Saglio (Titolare del corso)
Isabella Russo
Teaching period
Da definire
A distanza

Sommario del corso


Course objectives

Aim of the activity is to provide to PhD students latest advances on platelet function and dysfunction and their relationship with the increased risk of atherothrombotic events in patients with cardiometabolic risk factors and characterized by platelet hyperactivation and hyperaggregability.

The activity carried out during the program on  “Platelet dysfunction in atherothrombotic diseases” will contribute to reach the objectives of the PhD course in Experimental Medicine and Therapy by providing to PhD students: i) an overview of mechanisms involved in the prothrombotic phenotype of patients affected by cardiometabolic disorders, such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia and hypertension; ii) knowledges on the main laboratory methods and instruments utilized to measure different aspects of platelet function and activation, useful also to monitor antiaggregant therapy.


Course delivery

Modes of Teaching: Lecturing in the field integrated by open discussion and analysis of suggested reading. 


Learning assessment methods

Learning assessment will be performed by asking PhD students to respond to a multiple choice questionnaire containing platelet (dys)function – related specific questions.



Taking into account that changes in platelet function occurring in metabolic and hemodynamic disorders have an impact on the risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality owing to atherothrombotic events, the activity program will be structured in lectures aimed at elucidating some major topics on platelet function and mechanisms of impaired platelet reactivity.

First Session: Introduction to Platelets 

Lection n.1 (1hr) - “Platelets in hemostasis”: basic mechanisms of platelet response to agonists and inhibitors.

Lection n.2 (1hr)- “Platelet function assays”: pro and cons of the main techniques utilized to investigate platelet function.

Lection n.3 (1hr)- Practical demonstration of platelet function tests in laboratory (Light Transmission Aggregometry, Aggregation in whole blood, Platelet Function Analyzer-100)

Second Session: Platelet Abnormalities in Metabolic Disorders 

Lection n.4 (1 hr)- “Platelet hyperactivity in Obesity and Metabolic Syndrome” Lection n.5 (1 hr)- “Platelet dysfunction in Diabetes and Dyslipidemia”

Suggested readings and bibliography


  1. van der Meijden PEJ, Heemskerk JWM. Platelet biology and functions: new concepts and clinical perspectives. Nat Rev Cardiol. 2019 Mar;16(3):166-179.
  2. Barale C, Russo I. Influence of cardiometabolic risk factors on platelet function. Int J Mol Sci 2020, 21(2),pii:E623.
  3. Santilli F, et al. Platelets and diabetes mellitus. Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat. 2015 Jul;120:28-39.
  4. Lordkipanidzé M. Platelet Function Tests. Semin Thromb Hemost. 2016 Apr;42(3):258-67.




Platelets are key players in primary hemostasis and thrombus formation. Hemostasis or blood coagulation are not the only function of platelets, which are also involved in pathological processes such as chronic inflammation and atherothrombosis. The atherothrombotic process underlies acute coronary and cerebrovascular events where the activation of inflammatory mechanisms is strictly dependent on interaction among different cell types, such as platelets, leukocytes, and cells of the vascular wall.


Last update: 16/11/2023 10:12
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