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Semin Hematol. 1997 Jul;34(3):205-16.

Protein C and protein S deficiencies.

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  • 1Unité INSERM 428, UFR des Sciences Pharmaceutiques et Biologiques, Paris, France.


The protein C (PC) pathway, with its cofactor protein S (PS), is an important natural antithrombotic mechanism. Both PC and PS deficiencies have been implicated in thrombophilia. The molecular basis for hereditary PC and PS deficiencies is highly heterogeneous, with a large spectrum of mutations that have various effects on the expression of the relevant allele. A small subset of patients who are homozygous or compound heterozygous for a PC gene mutation have severe thrombotic complications at birth, whereas onset occurs later in the other cases. Patients heterozygous for a PC or PS gene abnormality may develop recurrent thrombosis during adulthood, with a probability of remaining free of thrombosis of about 50% at age 45. A PC or PS gene defect is associated with the factor V Arg 506 to Gln mutation in 10% to 30% of symptomatic patients, suggesting that clinical expression is controlled by several genes in heterozygous patients.

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