Differences in thrombin and plasmin generation potential between East African and Western European adults: The role of genetic and non-genetic factors

Godfrey S. Temba1,2 | Nadira Vadaq1,3 | Jun Wan4 | Vesla Kullaya2,5 | Dana Huskens4 | Tal Pecht6,7 | Martin Jaeger1 | Collins K. Boahen1 | Vasiliki Matzaraki1 | Wieteke Broeders1 | Leo A. B. Joosten1 | Sultana M. H. Faradz8 | Gibson Kibiki5 | Saskia Middeldorp9 | Duccio Cavalieri10 | Paolo Lionetti11 | Philip G. de Groot4 | Joachim L. Schultze6,7,12 | Mihai G. Netea1,13 | Vinod Kumar1,14 | Bas de Laat4 | Blandina T. Mmbaga5,15 | Andre J. van der Ven1 | Mark Roest4 | Quirijn de Mast1
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Geographic variability in coagulation across populations and their determinants are poorly understood.


To compare thrombin (TG) and plasmin (PG) generation parameters between healthy Tanzanian and Dutch individuals, and to study associations with inflammation and different genetic, host and environmental factors. Methods: TG and PG parameters were measured in 313 Tanzanians of African descent living in Tanzania and 392 Dutch of European descent living in the Netherlands and related to results of a dietary questionnaire, circulating inflammatory markers, genotyping, and plasma metabolomics.


Tanzanians exhibited an enhanced TG and PG capacity, compared to Dutch participants. A higher proportion of Tanzanians had a TG value in the upper quartile with a PG value in the lower/middle quartile, suggesting a relative pro-coagulant state. Tanzanians also displayed an increased normalized thrombomodulin sensitivity ratio, suggesting reduced sensitivity to protein C. In Tanzanians, PG parameters (lag time and TTP) were associated with seasonality and food-derived plasma metabolites. The Tanzanians had higher concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which correlated strongly with TG and PG parameters. There was limited overlap in genetic variation associated with TG and PG parameters between the two cohorts. Pathway analysis of genetic variants in the Tanzanian cohort revealed multiple immune pathways that were enriched with TG and PG traits, confirming the importance of coregulation between coagulation and inflammation.


Tanzanians have an enhanced TG and PG potential compared to Dutch individuals, which may relate to differences in inflammation, genetics and diet. These observations highlight the importance of better understanding of the geographic variability in coagulation across populations.