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J Thromb Haemost. 2005 Jan;3(1):35-45.

Pleiotropic functions of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1.

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Center for Molecular and Vascular Biology, KU, Leuven, Belgium.


Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), a 45-kDa serine proteinase inhibitor with reactive site peptide bond Arg345-Met346, is the main physiological plasminogen activator inhibitor. It occurs in human plasma at an antigen concentration of about 20 ng mL(-1). Besides the active inhibitory form of PAI-1 that spontaneously converts to a latent form, also a substrate form exists that is cleaved at the P1-P1' site by its target enzymes, but does not form stable complexes. Besides its role in regulating hemostasis, PAI-1 plays a role in several biological processes dependent on plasminogen activator or plasmin activity. Studies with transgenic mice have revealed a functional role for PAI-1 in wound healing, atherosclerosis, metabolic disturbances such as obesity and insulin resistance, tumor angiogenesis, chronic stress, bone remodeling, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, fibrosis, glomerulonephritis and sepsis. It is not always clear if these functions depend on the antiproteolytic activity of PAI-1, on its binding to vitronectin or on its intereference with cellular migration or matrix binding.

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