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Br J Haematol. 2011 Jun;153(5):644-54. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2141.2011.08657.x. Epub 2011 Apr 4.

Function of the activated protein C (APC) autolysis loop in activated FVIII inactivation.

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Department of Molecular and Experimental Medicine, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.


Activated protein C (APC) binds to its substrates activated factor V (FVa) and activated factor VIII (FVIIIa) with a basic exosite that consists of loops 37, 60, 70 and the autolysis loop. These loops have a high density of basic residues, resulting in a positive charge on the surface of APC. Many of these residues are important in the interaction of APC with FVa and FVIIIa. The current study focused on the function of the autolysis loop in the interaction with FVIIIa. This loop was previously shown to interact with FVa, and it inhibits APC inactivation by plasma serpins. Charged residues of the autolysis loop were individually mutated to alanine and the activity of these mutants was assessed in functional FVIIIa inactivation assays. The autolysis loop was functionally important for FVIIIa inactivation. Mutation of R306, K311 and R314 each resulted in significantly reduced FVIIIa inactivation. The inactivating cleavages of FVIIIa at R336 and R562 were affected equally by the mutations. Protein S and FV stimulated cleavage at R562 more than cleavage at R336, independent of mutations in the autolysis loop. Together, these results confirmed that the autolysis loop plays a significant role as part of the basic exosite on APC in the interaction with FVIIIa.

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