Thrombin-activable fibrinolysis inhibitor attenuates (DD)E-mediated stimulation of plasminogen activation by reducing the affinity of (DD)E for tissue plasminogen activator. A potential mechanism for enhancing the fibrin specificity of tissue plasminogen activator.
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A complex of d-dimer noncovalently associated with fragment E ((DD)E), a degradation product of cross-linked fibrin that binds tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) and plasminogen (Pg) with affinities similar to those of fibrin, compromises the fibrin specificity of t-PA by stimulating systemic Pg activation. In this study, we examined the effect of thrombin-activable fibrinolysis inhibitor (TAFI), a latent carboxypeptidase B (CPB)-like enzyme, on the stimulatory activity of (DD)E. Incubation of (DD)E with activated TAFI (TAFIa) or CPB (a) produces a 96% reduction in the capacity of (DD)E to stimulate t-PA-mediated activation of Glu- or Lys-Pg by reducing k(cat) and increasing K(m) for the reaction; (b) induces the release of 8 mol of lysine/mol of (DD)E, although most of the stimulatory activity is lost after release of only 4 mol of lysine/mol (DD)E; and (c) reduces the affinity of (DD)E for Glu-Pg, Lys-Pg, and t-PA by 2-, 4-, and 160-fold, respectively. Because TAFIa- or CPB-exposed (DD)E produces little stimulation of Glu-Pg activation by t-PA, (DD)E is not degraded into fragment E and d-dimer, the latter of which has been reported to impair fibrin polymerization. These data suggest a novel role for TAFIa. By attenuating systemic Pg activation by (DD)E, TAFIa renders t-PA more fibrin-specific.
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