Effects of eltrombopag on platelet count and platelet activation in Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome/X-linked thrombocytopenia

Anja J. Gerrits, Emily A. Leven, Andrew L. Frelinger, Sophie L. Brigstocke, Michelle A. Berny-Lang, W. Beau Mitchell, Shoshana Revel-Vilk, Hannah Tamary, Sabrina L. Carmichael, Marc R. Barnard, Alan D. Michelson*, James B. Bussel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Because Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome (WAS) and X-linked thrombocytopenia (XLT) patients have microthrombocytopenia, hemorrhage is a major problem. We asked whether eltrombopag, a thrombopoietic agent, would increase platelet counts, improve platelet activation, and/or reduce bleeding in WAS/XLT patients. In 9 WAS/XLT patients and 8 age-matched healthy controls, platelet activation was assessed by whole blood flow cytometry. Agonist-induced platelet surface activated glycoprotein (GP) IIb-IIIa and P-selectin in WAS/XLT patients were proportional to platelet size and therefore decreased compared with controls. In contrast, annexin V binding showed no differences between WAS/XLT and controls. Eltrombopag treatment resulted in an increased platelet count in 5 out of 8 patients. Among responders to eltrombopag, immature platelet fraction in 3 WAS/XLT patients was significantly less increased compared with 7 pediatric chronic immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) patients. Platelet activation did not improve in 3 WAS/XLT patients whose platelet count improved on eltrombopag. In conclusion: (1) the reduced platelet activation observed in WAS/XLT is primarily due to the microthrombocytopenia; and (2) although the eltrombopag-induced increase in platelet production in WAS/XLT is less than in ITP, eltrombopag has beneficial effects on platelet count but not platelet activation in the majority of WAS/XLT patients. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT00909363.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1367-1378
Number of pages12
Issue number11
StatePublished - 10 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
National Center for Advancing Translational SciencesUL1TR000457


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