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J Biochem Mol Toxicol. 2015 May;29(5):240-8. doi: 10.1002/jbt.21690. Epub 2015 Feb 4.

Spirulan from blue-green algae inhibits fibrin and blood clots: its potent antithrombotic effects.

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Department of Life Science, Chosun University, Gwangju 501-759, Republic of Korea.


We investigated in vitro and in vivo fibrinolytic and antithrombotic activity of spirulan and analyzed its partial biochemical properties. Spirulan, a sulfated polysaccharide from the blue-green alga Arthrospira platensis, exhibits antithrombotic potency. Spirulan showed a strong fibrin zymogram lysis band corresponding to its molecular mass. It specifically cleaved Aα and Bβ, the major chains of fibrinogen. Spirulan directly decreased the activity of thrombin and factor X activated (FXa), procoagulant proteins. In vitro assays using human fibrin and mouse blood clots showed fibrinolytic and hemolytic activities of spirulan. Spirulan (2 mg/kg) showed antithrombotic effects in the ferric chloride (FeCl3 )-induced carotid arterial thrombus model and collagen and epinephrine-induced pulmonary thromboembolism mouse model. These results may be attributable to the prevention of thrombus formation and partial lysis of thrombus. Therefore, we suggest that spirulan may be a potential antithrombotic agent for thrombosis-related diseases.


Arthrospira platensis; Fibrinolytic activity; Spirulan; anti-procoagulant protein activity; antithrombotic activity

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