Longitudinal effects of menopausal hormone treatments on platelet characteristics and cell-derived microvesicles

Virginia M. Miller, Brian D. Lahr, Kent R. Bailey, John A. Heit, S. Mitchell Harman, Muthuvel Jayachandran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Activated platelets serve as a catalyst for thrombin generation and a source of vasoactive and mitogenic factors affecting vascular remodeling. Oral menopausal hormone treatments (MHT) may carry greater thrombotic risk than transdermal products. This study compared effects of oral and transdermal MHT on platelet characteristics, platelet proteins, and platelet-derived microvesicles (MV) in recently menopausal women. Platelets and MV were prepared from blood of a subset of women (n = 117) enrolled in the Kronos Early Estrogen Prevention Study prior to and after 48 months of treatment with either oral conjugated equine estrogen (0.45 mg/day), transdermal 17β-estradiol (50 g/day), each with intermittent progesterone (200 mg/day for 12 days a month), or placebo pills and patch. Platelet count and expression of platelet P-selectin and fibrinogen receptors were similar across groups. An aggregate measure of 4-year change in vasoactive and mitogenic factors in platelet lysate, by principle component analysis, indicated significantly lower values in both MHT groups compared to placebo. Increases in numbers of tissue factor positive and platelet-derived MV were significantly greater in the transdermal compared to placebo group. MHT was associated with significantly reduced platelet content of vasoactive and mitogenic factors representing a potential mechanism by which MHT may affect vascular remodeling. Various hormonal compositions and doses of MHT could differentially regulate nuclear transcription in bone marrow megakaryocytes and non-genomic pathways in circulating platelets thus determining numbers and characteristics of circulating MV. Thrombotic risk associated with oral MHT most likely involves liver-derived inflammatory/coagulation proteins rather than circulating platelets per se.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-42
Number of pages11
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2016


  • Estrogen
  • microparticles
  • platelet aggregation
  • platelet-derived factor
  • thrombosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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