Human platelets were obtained in the fully resting state by treating discoid populations with 1.5 mM tetracaine and in the activated state by treatment with 2 microM A-23187. After gel filtration or washing, respectively, platelet suspensions were lysed with 1% Triton X-100 at pH 6.8. The precipitates from resting platelets viewed by negative staining appeared predominantly granular with a few very short microfilaments. They contained polypeptides of 250, 100, 45, 38, 36.5, and 35 Kdaltons, and three small polypeptides including one with the mobility of profilin on SDS gels. Precipitates from activated platelets lacked this low molecular weight band and contained a major band at 200 Kdaltons with the mobility of myosin; these precipitates had significant K+, Ca++ ATPase activity absent from the precipitate of resting platelets. As seen in negative staining, precipitates from activated platelets contained microfilaments arranged as nets or bundles. The granular resting precipitates were transformed in vitro into microfilament bundles by washing the precipitates in buffer at higher pH (7.6) in the presence of 5 X 10(-5) M calcium chloride.

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