Platelet factor XIII becomes active without the release of activation peptide during platelet activation

L. Muszbek, J. Polgar, Z. Boda

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The potentially active A subunit of factor XIII of blood coagulation has also been detected in platelets and monocytes/macrophages though the exact function of this cellular protransglutaminase has not yet been elucidated. In physiological conditions the first step in the activation of plasma factor XIII is the removal of an activation peptide from the N-terminal end of subunit A by thrombin. The A subunit then, in the presence of Ca2+, dissociates from the inhibitory B subunit and assumes an active conformation. Cellular factor XIII, which lacks B subunit, can be proteolytically activated in vitro by thrombin and the intracellular Ca2+ sensitive protease, calpain, in the same way as plasma factor XIII subunit A, and calpain has been suggested as the intracellular protease involved in the activation of cellular factor XIII in platelets. In the present experiments it was shown by SDS PAGE that during long-term stimulation of platelets with thrombin nondisulfide-crosslinked high M(r) protein polymers not penetrating the concentrating gel were formed. The lack of these polymers in thrombin-stimulated factor XIII deficient platelets clearly indicated that their formation in normal platelets was due to factor XIII that became active during platelet activation. However, no release of the activation peptide could be detected by Western blotting during this process. Similarly, no proteolytic cleavage of factor XIII was detectable when platelets were stimulated by Ca2+ ionophore through this stimulus activated calpain as it was clearly demonstrated by the breakdown of major intracellular calpain substrates. The results indicate 1) during thrombin induced platelet activation factor XIII becomes active and crosslinks platelet protein, 2) platelet factor XIII is not an intracellular substrate of calpain, 3) cellular factor XIII could be activated without the proteolytic removal of activation peptide. It is presumed that the nonproteolytic pathway for the activation of cellular factor XIII, we reported most recently, might have physiological implications under such conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-285
Number of pages4
JournalThrombosis and Haemostasis
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1993


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology

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