The factor VIII/von Willebrand factor (f.VIII/vWf) protein was purified from the plasma of a patient with von Willebrand's disease (vWd). The patient had all of the classic laboratory findings of vWd except for the ristocetin-induced platelet aggregation of his own platelet-rich plasma. The disease has been documented in three generations. Comparison of the purified normal and vWd f.VIIi/vWf protein revealed several abnormalities, including decreased concentration of f.VIII/vWf antigen; decreased specific vWf activity; absence of the larger molecular forms of the f.VIII/vWf protein; carbohydrate deficiencies affecting the sialic acid, penultimate galactose and N- acetylglucosamine moieties; and decreased binding of the f.VIII/vWf protein to its platelet receptor. These studies indicate the multiplicity of biochemical and functional abnormalities associated with the f.VIII/vWf protein in vWd. f.VIII/vWf protein to normal f.VIII/vWf protein that had been treated with 2-mercaptoethanol (2-ME) to reduce the multimer size and then treated with specific exoglycosidases to remove the sialic acid and penultimate galactose residues revealed similar biologic properties.

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