Detection of extracellular genomic DNA scaffold in human thrombus: Implications for the use of deoxyribonuclease enzymes in thrombolysis

Rahmi Oklu, Hassan Albadawi, Michael T. Watkins, Marc Monestier, Martin Sillesen, Stephan Wicky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Purpose: Mechanisms underlying transition of a thrombus susceptible to tissue plasminogen activator (TPA) fibrinolysis to one that is resistant is unclear. Demonstration of a new possible thrombus scaffold may open new avenues of research in thrombolysis and may provide mechanistic insight into thrombus remodeling. Materials and Methods: Ten human thrombus samples were collected during cases of thrombectomy and open surgical repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms (five samples < 3 d old and five samples > 1 y old). Additionally, an acute murine hindlimb ischemia model was created to evaluate thrombus samples in mice. Human sections were immunostained for the H2A/H2B/DNA complex, myeloperoxidase, fibrinogen, and von Willebrand factor. Mouse sections were immunostained with the H2A antibody. All samples were further evaluated after hematoxylin and eosin and Masson trichrome staining. Results: An extensive network of extracellular histone/DNA complex was demonstrated in the matrix of human ex vivo thrombus. This network is present throughout the highly cellular acute thrombus. However, in chronic thrombi, detection of the histone/DNA network was predominantly in regions of low collagen content and high cell density, which were mostly near the lumen. These regions of high cell density contained neutrophils and monocytes. Similarly, sections from the acute murine hindlimb ischemia model also exhibited extensive immunoreactivity to the histone antibody in the extracellular space within murine thrombi. Conclusions: Extensive detection of genomic DNA associated with histones in the extracellular matrix of human and mouse thrombi suggest the presence of a new thrombus-associated scaffold.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)712-718
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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