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Conformational changes upon conversion of fibrinogen into fibrin. The mechanisms of exposure of cryptic sites.
Biochemistry Department, Holland Laboratory, American Red Cross, 15601 Crabbs Branch Way, Rockville, MD 20855, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 2001;936():185-204.
Conformational changes upon conversion of fibrinogen to fibrin result in the exposure of multiple binding sites that provide its interaction with various proteins and cells and, thus, its participation in a number of physiological and pathological processes. Here we focus on conformational changes in the fibrinogen D regions (domains) and alpha C-domains that are directly involved in intermolecular interactions upon fibrin assembly. According to the current view, two alpha C-domains that interact intramolecularly in fibrinogen undergo an intra- to intermolecular switch to form alpha C-polymers in fibrin. The availability of recombinant fragments that correspond to the alpha C-domain made it possible to further clarify this mechanism and to reveal novel cryptic sites in this domain for plasminogen and its activator tPA, whose exposure may play an important role in the regulation of fibrinolysis. To elucidate the mechanism of exposure of cryptic sites in the D regions, we tested the accessibility of their fibrin specific epitopes (A alpha 148-160 and gamma 312-324) that are also involved in binding of plasminogen and tPA, in several fragments derived from fibrinogen (fragment D), and crosslinked fibrin (fragment D-D and its non-covalent complex with the E1 fragment, D-D:E1). Neither D nor D-D bound tPA, plasminogen, or anti-A alpha 148-160 and anti-gamma 312-324 monoclonal antibodies. At the same time both epitopes became accessible in the D-D:E1 complex. Melting of D and D-D revealed that their domains have the same stability while in the D-D:E1 complex they became more stable. These results indicate that upon fibrin assembly, driven primarily by the interaction between complementary binding sites of the E and two D regions, the latter undergo conformational changes that cause the exposure of their cryptic sites. They also suggest that the fibrin specific conformation of the D regions is preserved in the D-D:E1 complex.
1 Originating Grant
MEDVED, LEONID V.
1 January 1998 - 31 July 2012
NATIONAL HEART, LUNG, AND BLOOD INSTITUTE
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