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Rasa3 controls megakaryocyte Rap1 activation, integrin signaling and differentiation into proplatelet.

Authors: Patricia P. Molina-Ortiz, Séléna S. Polizzi, Eve E. Ramery, Stéphanie S. Gayral, Céline C. Delierneux, Cécile C. Oury, Shintaro S. Iwashita, Stéphane S. Schurmans
Published: 06/26/2014, PLoS genetics


Rasa3 is a GTPase activating protein of the GAP1 family which targets Ras and Rap1. Ubiquitous Rasa3 catalytic inactivation in mouse results in early embryonic lethality. Here, we show that Rasa3 catalytic inactivation in mouse hematopoietic cells results in a lethal syndrome characterized by severe defects during megakaryopoiesis, thrombocytopenia and a predisposition to develop preleukemia. The main objective of this study was to define the cellular and the molecular mechanisms of terminal megakaryopoiesis alterations. We found that Rasa3 catalytic inactivation altered megakaryocyte development, adherence, migration, actin cytoskeleton organization and differentiation into proplatelet forming megakaryocytes. These megakaryocyte alterations were associated with an increased active Rap1 level and a constitutive integrin activation. Thus, these mice presented a severe thrombocytopenia, bleeding and anemia associated with an increased percentage of megakaryocytes in the bone marrow, bone marrow fibrosis, extramedular hematopoiesis, splenomegaly and premature death. Altogether, our results indicate that Rasa3 catalytic activity controls Rap1 activation and integrin signaling during megakaryocyte differentiation in mouse.

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