Diacylglycerol kinase ζ is a negative regulator of GPVI-mediated platelet activation

Alyssa J. Moroi, Nicole M. Zwifelhofer, Matthew J. Riese, Debra K. Newman and Peter J. Newman

Key Points

  • DGKζ is a novel negative regulator of GPVI-mediated platelet activation.

  • Loss of DGKζ upregulates surface expression of GPVI in platelets and megakaryocytes.


Diacylglycerol kinases (DGKs) are a family of enzymes that convert diacylglycerol (DAG) into phosphatidic acid (PA). The ζ isoform of DGK (DGKζ) has been reported to inhibit T-cell responsiveness by downregulating intracellular levels of DAG. However, its role in platelet function remains undefined. In this study, we show that DGKζ was expressed at significant levels in both platelets and megakaryocytes and that DGKζ-knockout (DGKζ-KO) mouse platelets were hyperreactive to glycoprotein VI (GPVI) agonists, as assessed by aggregation, spreading, granule secretion, and activation of relevant signal transduction molecules. In contrast, they were less responsive to thrombin. Platelets from DGKζ-KO mice accumulated faster on collagen-coated microfluidic surfaces under conditions of arterial shear and stopped blood flow faster after ferric chloride–induced carotid artery injury. Other measures of hemostasis, as measured by tail bleeding time and rotational thromboelastometry analysis, were normal. Interestingly, DGKζ deficiency led to increased GPVI expression on the platelet and megakaryocyte surfaces without affecting the expression of other platelet surface receptors. These results implicate DGKζ as a novel negative regulator of GPVI-mediated platelet activation that plays an important role in regulating thrombus formation in vivo.

  • Submitted September 20, 2018.
  • Accepted March 8, 2019.
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