An autosomal dominant, qualitative platelet disorder associated with multimerin deficiency, abnormalities in platelet factor V, thrombospondin, von Willebrand factor, and fibrinogen and an epinephrine aggregation defect.
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Multimerin is a massive soluble, multimeric protein found in platelets and endothelial cells. Recent studies identified multimerin as a specific coagulation factor V binding protein, complexed with platelet, but not plasma, factor V. These findings led us to investigate individuals with inherited factor V deficiencies for possible multimerin abnormalities. Platelet proteins were evaluated using immunoassays, sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, immunoblotting, immunoprecipitation, and direct binding studies. Patients with factor V Quebec, a disorder with abnormal platelet factor V, had a quantitative deficiency in multimerin (n = 11 tested; mean, 12.5%; range, 5% to 27% of the normal pool; normal range, 45% to 214%) with a normal multimer pattern. Quantitative and qualitative abnormalities were detected in their platelet factor V. An unrelated patient who was deficient in platelet and plasma factor V had normal platelet multimerin. The levels of platelet beta-thromboglobulin, von Willebrand factor, thrombospondin, and fibrinogen antigen were normal in the factor V Quebec patients. However, proteins with abnormal mobility were detected in their platelet lysate and releasate, and their platelet thrombospondin, von Willebrand factor, and fibrinogen showed evidence of proteolytic degradation. Platelet counts of the factor V Quebec patients ranged from mildly thrombocytopenic to low normal (mean, 159 x 10(9)/L; range, 104 to 198 x 10(9)/L). In addition, their platelets failed to aggregate in response to 6 to 10 micromol/L epinephrine despite normal numbers of platelet alpha 2-adrenergic receptors. These data indicate that patients with factor V Quebec have an inherited bleeding disorder distinct from other platelet disorders and associated with multiple abnormalities, including multimerin deficiency, abnormal platelet factor V, thrombospondin, von Willebrand factor, and fibrinogen, and an epinephrine aggregation defect.
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