Mammals transport blood through a high-pressure, closed vascular network and lymph through a low-pressure, open vascular network. These vascular networks connect at the lymphovenous (LV) junction, where lymph drains into blood and an LV valve (LVV) prevents backflow of blood into lymphatic vessels. Here we describe an essential role for platelets in preventing blood from entering the lymphatic system at the LV junction. Loss of CLEC2, a receptor that activates platelets in response to lymphatic endothelial cells, resulted in backfilling of the lymphatic network with blood from the thoracic duct (TD) in both neonatal and mature mice. Fibrin-containing platelet thrombi were observed at the LVV and in the terminal TD in wild-type mice, but not
Paul R. Hess, David R. Rawnsley, Zoltán Jakus, Yiqing Yang, Daniel T. Sweet, Jianxin Fu, Brett Herzog, MinMin Lu, Bernhard Nieswandt, Guillermo Oliver, Taija Makinen, Lijun Xia, Mark L. Kahn
Loss of CLEC2 results in blood-filled lymphatics in the intestine of both perinatal and mature mice.