Platelets Play a Large Role in Tissue Regeneration and Repair

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Unlike other blood cells, platelets are small anucleate structures derived from marrow megakaryocytes and thought for almost a century to possess solely hemostatic potentials. Platelets, however, play a much wider role in tissue regeneration and repair and interact intimately with tumor cells.
On one hand, tumor cells induce platelet aggregation [TCIPA] known to act as the trigger of cancer associated thrombosis and on the other, recruited to the tumor microenvironment platelets interact directly with tumor cells favoring their proliferation and indirectly through the release of a wide palette of growth factors, angiogenic and mitogenic proteins. The role of platelets is not only confined to the primary tumor site. They escort tumor cells helping their intravasation, vascular migration and extravasation to the tissues forming distant metastasis.
As expected, non-specific or specific inhibition of platelets and their contents represents an attractive approach in the fight against cancer.
The current review illustrates the role played by the platelets at primary tumor sites and in the various stages of the metastatic process.

Key Word: Tumor, Cancer, Platelet, TCIPA, Growth factor, Metastasis

In 1877, Hayem provided a firm histologic basis for platelets; albeit he felt they were the origin of red blood cells and referred to them as “hematoblasts”. Bizzozero, in 1882, introduced the term “blood plates” and documented their importance in blood

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