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J Pharmacol Sci. 2005 Nov;99(3):247-51. Epub 2005 Oct 27.

A newly derived protein from Bacillus subtilis natto with both antithrombotic and fibrinolytic effects.

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Department of Legal Medicine, Dokkyo University School of Medicine, Tochigi, Japan.


Natto, steamed soybeans fermented by Bacillus subtilis natto, is a traditional Japanese food. We derived a purified protein layer, called NKCP as a trade mark, from B. subtilis natto fermentation. In the present study, we examined the fibrinolytic and antithrombotic effects of NKCP and identified its active component to clarify the fibrinolytic effect of NKCP observed in preliminary clinical trials previously. The active component of NKCP was identified as a 34-kilodalton protein designated bacillopeptidase F. NKCP showed direct degradation of artificial blood clot in saline. The protease activity, accounting for the fibrinolytic effect of NKCP, was examined with a chromogenic substrate for plasmin. Dose-dependent prolongations of both prothrombin time and active partial thromboplastin time were observed in rats with intra-duodenum administration of NKCP. Our in vitro and in vivo studies suggest that NKCP has both a fibrinolytic effect and an antithrombotic effect similar to heparin. Because NKCP is derived from food and has safety data demonstrated by previous animal experiments and preliminary clinical trials, NKCP is considered as safe for clinical use.

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