ARTICLE | Targets & Mechanisms

Ashwell That Ends Well

June 5, 2008 7:00 AM UTC

The hemostatic system, or the balance between pro- and anticlotting factors, keeps blood poised on the edge of coagulation. Imbalances in the system caused by pathogens or inflammation can lead to uncontrolled bleeding or uncontrolled clotting and sepsis. A paper in Nature Medicine has identified a critical control knob in this mechanism: a hepatocyte surface protein called the Ashwell receptor.1

According to the authors, the findings offer a new mechanism underlying distributed intravascular coagulation (DIC), the systemic clotting triggered by bacterial sepsis...