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Cambridge Cardiovascular



Platelets are the principal cellular determinants of haemostasis and pathological thrombus formation leading to myocardial infarction and stroke. Following adhesion to sites of vascular damage, platelets undergo primary activation leading to shape change, upregulation of integrin activity and secretion of alpha and dense granules. Granule release introduces bioactive molecules into the immediate environment of a growing thrombus. Such molecules include adhesion proteins, coagulation factors and soluble platelet agonists, such as ADP, ATP, thromboxane and zinc.  Zinc has long been known to be a regulator of haemostatic responses, influencing both coagulation and platelet aggregation.  However, the role of mechanism by which zinc influences platelets is not well understood.

My principal research aims are to examine the mechanism by which zinc acts as an extracellular and intracellular mediator of platelet behaviour.  Other interests include the analysis of platelet receptor activity in in vitro models of thrombosis.


Key publications: 
  1. Taylor, K.A., Ahmed, Wilson, D., Harper, M.T. and Pugh, N. Extracellular chloride is required for efficient activation of secondary signalling pathways during platelet aggregation. Accepted for publication in Platelets.

 2. Pugh N, Maddox B.D., Bihan D., Taylor K.A., Mahaut-Smith M.P., Farndale R.W. Differential integrin activity mediated by platelet collagen receptor engagement under flow conditions. Thromb Haemost. 2017 May 24.

 3. Taylor, K.A. and Pugh, N. The contribution of zinc to platelet behaviour during haemostasis and thrombosis. Metallomics. 2016. 8(2):144-55.

 4. Watson, B.R., White, N.A., Taylor, K.A., Howes, J.M., Malcor, J-D., Bihan, D., Sage, S.O., Farndale, R.W., Pugh, N. Zinc is a transmembrane agonist that induces platelet activation in a tyrosine phosphorylation-dependent manner. Metallomics. 2016. 20;8(1):91-100.

 5. Howes, J.M., Pugh, N., Knäuper, V. and Farndale, R.W. Modified platelet deposition on matrix metalloproteinase 13 digested collagen I. J Thromb Haemost. 2015. 3(12):2253-9.

Associate Professor and Interim Deputy Dean (Research and Innovation)
Dr Nicholas  Pugh

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