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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1992 Apr 1;89(7):2779-83.

Partial characterization of vertebrate prothrombin cDNAs: amplification and sequence analysis of the B chain of thrombin from nine different species.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.


The cDNA sequence of the B chain of thrombin (EC has been determined from nine vertebrate species (rat, mouse, rabbit, chicken, gecko, newt, rainbow trout, sturgeon, and hagfish). The amino acid sequence identities vary from 96.5% (rat vs. mouse) to 62.6% (newt vs. hagfish). Of the 240 amino acids spanned in all the species compared, there is identity at 110 (45.8%) positions. When conservative changes are included, the amino acid similarity increases to 75%. The most conserved portions of the B chain are the active-site residues and adjacent amino acids, the B loop, and the primary substrate-binding region. In addition, the Arg-Gly-Asp motif is conserved in 9 of the 11 species compared, and the chemotactic/growth factor domain is well conserved in all of the 11 species compared. The least conserved regions of the B chain correspond to surface loops, including the putative thrombomodulin-binding sites and one of the hirudin-binding regions. The extent of the amino acid sequence similarity and the conservation of many of the functional/structural motifs suggests that, in addition to their role in blood coagulation, vertebrate thrombins may also play an important role in the general mechanisms of wound repair.

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