Platelets and platelet extracellular vesicles (pEV) are at the crossroads of coagulation and immunity. Extracellular vesicles are messengers that not only transmit signals between cells, but also provide information about the status of their cell of origin. Thus, pEVs have potential as both biomarkers of platelet activation and contributors to pathology. Coronavirus Disease-19 (COVID-19), caused by infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is a complex disease affecting multiple organs and is characterized by a high degree of inflammation and risk of thrombosis in some patients. Researchers from the Quebec University Hospital Research Center introduce pEVs as valuable biomarkers in disease with a special focus on their potential as predictors of and contributors to COVID-19.
SARS-CoV-2 infection of lungs and subsequent damage may activate cells in the blood and induce platelet activation, aggregation, and extracellular vesicle release. Extracellular vesicles carry a diverse array of signaling molecules that can influence immune responses and coagulation