Effects of in vitro exposure of alcohol on surface receptor expression of human platelets

Marcus E. McKenzie, Christopher R. Bell, Eric D. Horowitz, Benjamin R. Oshrine, Dan Atar, Victor L. Serebruany

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Platelet inhibition after moderate alcohol consumption in patients with ischaemic heart disease may contribute to reducing the risk for developing acute coronary syndromes. However, the mechanism by which ethanol affects platelets is not clarified. We sought to determine the in vitro effects of alcohol on the surface expression of human platelet receptors using whole blood flow cytometry. Blood samples from 10 healthy volunteers were incubated for 30 min with 25 and 50 mmol l-1 of phosphate buffered saline diluted grain ethanol, concentrations often used in in vitro studies. The surface expression of platelet receptors was determined by flow cytometry after fixation with 2% paraformaldehyde using the following monoclonal antibodies: CD 41 (GP IIb/IIIa), CD 42b (GP Ib), CD 62p (P-selectin), CD 51/CD 61 (vitronectin receptor), CD 31 (PECAM-1), CD 107a (LAMP-1), CD 107b (LAMP-2), CD 63 (LIMP, LAMP-3) and CD 151 (PETA-3). Dose-dependent inhibition of GP IIb/IIIa, P-selectin, CD 63 and CD 107a receptor expression was observed in the ethanol-treated whole blood samples. This study for the first time establishes a direct effect of ethanol on selective major platelet receptors. Beneficial cardiovascular properties of moderate alcohol consumption may be explained by ethanol's antiplatelet action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-156
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Physiology and Functional Imaging
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002


  • Alcohol
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Flow cytometry
  • Human
  • Platelets

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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