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Scientists Find New Role for Estrogen

It triggers formation of blood platelets, researchers say

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2003 (HealthDayNews) -- Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory have discovered a previously unknown role estrogen plays in the body.

The most abundant form of naturally occurring estrogen, estradiol, triggers the formation of blood platelets, scientists report in the Dec. 1 issue of Genes and Development.

The information may prove important in treating conditions associated with altered platelet counts, such as anemia, certain leukemias and even the effects of chemotherapy.

Platelets, which are derived from a specialized bone marrow cell called a megakaryocyte, circulate in the bloodstream to promote clotting and halt bleeding.

More information

Here's where you can learn more about platelet count.

SOURCE: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, news release, Nov. 30, 2003
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