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Publication Date

Spring 11-22-2022


BACKGROUND: Our recent studies suggest that sphingomyelin levels in the plasma membrane influence TF (tissue factor) procoagulant activity. The current study was performed to investigate how alterations to sphingomyelin metabolic pathway would affect TF procoagulant activity and thereby affect hemostatic and thrombotic processes. METHODS: Macrophages and endothelial cells were transfected with specific siRNAs or infected with adenoviral vectors to alter sphingomyelin levels in the membrane. TF activity was measured in factor X activation assay. Saphenous vein incision-induced bleeding and the inferior vena cava ligation-induced flow restriction mouse models were used to evaluate hemostasis and thrombosis, respectively. RESULTS: Overexpression of SMS (sphingomyelin synthase) 1 or SMS2 in human monocyte-derived macrophages suppresses ATP-stimulated TF procoagulant activity, whereas silencing SMS1 or SMS2 increases the basal cell surface TF activity to the same level as of ATP-decrypted TF activity. Consistent with the concept that sphingomyelin metabolism influences TF procoagulant activity, silencing of acid sphingomyelinase or neutral sphingomyelinase 2 or 3 attenuates ATP-induced enhanced TF procoagulant activity in macrophages and endothelial cells. Niemann-Pick disease fibroblasts with a higher concentration of sphingomyelin exhibited lower TF activity compared with wild-type fibroblasts. In vivo studies revealed that LPS+ATP-induced TF activity and thrombin generation were attenuated in ASMase--/-- mice, while their levels were increased in SMS--/--mice. Further studies revealed that acid sphingomyelinase deficiency leads to impaired hemostasis, whereas SMS2 deficiency increases thrombotic risk. CONCLUSIONS: Overall, our data indicate that alterations in sphingomyelin metabolism would influence TF procoagulant activity and affect hemostatic and thrombotic processes.


© 2022 The Authors. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology is published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided that the original work is properly cited, the use is noncommercial, and no modifications or adaptations are made. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol is available at

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