Platelet production, derived from megakaryocytes, is regulated with thrombopoietin. Thrombopoietin is a hormone that is produced within the liver and kidneys. These steps explain how platelet forms from their very birth to their disposition.

1.) Birth of an embryo

When an embryo first comes to be, it consists of totipotent embryo cells, a specific type of cell. These cells have the capacity to divide into any cell needed by the body, whether it be an ear, eye, lung, liver, brain, or bone.

With a capacity to divide that is unmatched, these first cells are what divides into all other functioning cells. First, totipotent cells give form hematopoietic cells, which then divide into all other cells that are present in the blood.

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These cells continue to divide, keeping the totipotent cell pool alive.

Related: How Many Platelets are in the Human the Body?

2.) The formation of blood cells

The bloodline lineage of platelets begins with cells that are known as hematopoietic stem cells. These cells have the ability to grow and transform into any blood cell line form, including white blood cells, red blood cells, and also platelets.

Hematopoietic stem cells are the very first cells that give birth to all of the other cells that can be found in the blood. This is made possible by colony-stimulating factor influence.

These factors require chemicals to initiate a particular cell divide into other types of cells. For example, the presence of granulocyte monocytes, or GM-CSF, is the stimulating factor that lends to the production of blood cells from hematopoietic cells.

These cells continue to divide keeping the totipotent pool alive.

3.) Progenitor cells

Other committed cells types from this lineage are progenitor cells. Once these cells have formed, they can only divide into the next cell based on the chemical influence that is provided by the body.

That being said, progenitor cells are committed to giving form to the specific cell type based on the chemical they are provided with and cannot form into any other type of cell under the same circumstance.

4.) Cell lines

All of the various types of cell lines form together derived from a common ancestor. During this step, cell lines work to pool accordingly, separating from one another in their respective areas.

5.) Megakaryoblasts

Under the colony stimulating factors, progenitor cells create megakaryoblasts. These stimulating factors are completely essential to platelet formation.

These immature cells are only found within bone marrow. In certain diseases of the bone, megakaryoblast cells can release early into circulation, and are visible through a peripheral blood smear.

6.) Formation of megakaryocytes

Colony-stimulating factors also help megakaryoblasts mature, giving rise to megakaryocytes. Dependency on colony-stimulating factors in platelet formation stops at this step.

From here on out, erythropoietin takes on the task of platelet formation.

7.) Maturation of megakaryocytes

With the influence of erythropoietin, megakaryocytes mature. Erythropoietin is a hormone that is formed by the kidneys and liver before being released into the blood where it reaches the body’s bone and enters into bone marrow.

Here megakaryocyte maturation occurs. In diseases that involve the kidneys and liver, erythropoietin production can be compromised. As a result, the number of platelets produced in the body is also lowered.

8.) Megakaryocyte extrusion

Since megakaryocyctes are platelets’ precursor, this is the very last step in regard to involve bone marrow. All other steps of platelet formation occur outside of the bone within the bloodstream.

During this step, the bone marrow extrudes megakaryocytes from the bone through its capillaries before being released into the bloodstream.

9.)Pro-platelet release and megakaryocyte breakage

Cellular breakage and nuclear death occurs at the moment megakaryocytes release into the bloodstream. This happens even as they pass through the capillaries into the blood.

At this stage, megakaryocytes contain outgrowths of pro-platelets, which break off of a megakaryocyte’s main body. These pro-platelet-consisting extensions carry protein necessary for the forming of cell machinery.

10.) Platelets

Last but not least, platelets are formed by the breaking off of extension pro-platelet components into smaller pieces located in the blood.

These platelets are probably what you are familiar with through counts in the blood during various diagnostic health procedures. They can be counted through peripheral blood samples by putting it in a cell counter.

This process helps to detect any abnormally low or high platelet numbers. In order to recognize platelet morphology, peripheral blood smears can also be examined under a microscope. A blood smear is created from blood and is spread onto a slide.


These ten steps outline the formation of platelets and suggest that there is a plethora of room for complications when it comes to morphology and platelet count.

Any drug or defect that interferes with any one of these steps can lead to abnormal growth, or increase or decrease in platelet formation.

To diagnose patients that present with symptoms that are suggestive of a dysfunction in platelets such as clotting or bleeding, a doctor must take this into account, examining every one of these steps for factors that could have an effect on platelet count, in combination with diagnostic examination, an assessment of symptoms, morphology and platelet count.

Another important note to make is that all blood cells originate from the same single ancestor cell. In fact, every cell found in our body originates from a single cell.

Any defect at these earlier cell stages can present diseases at later stages. Since cell formation including platelet formation continues throughout our whole life, it is especially important to keep bone marrow safe.

Any tiny change in the overall environment of in which platelets form, along with other white and red blood cell production can result in huge differences in the functioning of the body.


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