Lawrence Goldfinger, PhD

Professor of Medicine

Lawrence Goldfinger


1020 Locust Street
Suite 394
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Email Lawrence Goldfinger

215-955-9170 fax

Featured Links

Lawrence Goldfinger, PhD

Professor of Medicine


PhD, Carnegie Mellon University


Research Interests

We are seeking to understand the molecular cell biology regulating how circulating blood platelets contribute to hemostasis and thrombosis, and to apply this understanding to modulate platelet function in various contexts.  Our research program spans molecular studies of control of platelet gene expression, the cell biological outcomes of this regulation, physiological studies of platelet function, and development of tools for pre-clinical applications in health and disease.

Platelet microRNAs as modulators of hemostasis and thrombosis

Hemostasis (prevention of blood leak after vascular injury by formation of a clot) and thrombosis (clot formation generally not in response to injury, which can cause pathological complications) are considered the primary functions of platelets, and platelets require many genes to carry out these functions.  In additon to those genes, platelets are enriched in small non-coding RNAs known as microRNAs (miRNAs) that are genrally understood to function to dampen the expression levels of protein-coding genes, and therby suppress gene activity.  We have found that miRNAs are important regulators of platelet function.  We are seeking to understand how miRNAs regulate platelet function in hemostasis and thrombosis, to identify the specific miRNAs and gene targets involved, and to develop strategies to manipulate miRNA function and modulate platelet reactivity to support hemostais or supress thrombotic potential.

Molecular control of mRNA translation in platelets

Platelets are anucleate cell fragments that circulate in blood for 7-10 days.  Hence, platelets lack genomic DNA but they do contain protein-coding message RNAs (mRNAs), un-spliced pre-mRNAs and mRNA splicing machinery, as well as all the necessary molecular and cellular componets to support translation of mRNA into protein, and to degrade exisiting proteins.  Platelet reactivity, hemostatic capacity and thrombotic potential vary widely in humans and we are investigating how control of protein translation contributes to this variation.  Although mRNA translation in platelets (despite an inability to generate new mRNAs) was recognized many years ago, very little remains known about how platelets translate new protein necessary for their ongoing metabolism and reactivity while in circulation.  We are exploring the molecular signaling controlling mRNA translation in circulating platelets, including the roles of platelet miRNAs, and the cellular and physiological outcomes and effects.  Based on these mechanistic studies, we are developing translational approaches to control platelet reactivity via miRNA manipulation and other approaches in multiple contexts.


Carnegie Mellon University
Northwestern University Medical School