Platelet glycoprotein (GP) Ib from 131 healthy Japanese was analyzed using SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and specific staining with peroxidase-coupled wheat germ agglutinin after it was transferred to nitrocellulose membranes. Four slightly different species of GPIb were observed and designated as A, B, C, and D for glycoproteins with molecular weights of 168,000, 162,000, 159,000, and 153,000 daltons, respectively. The respective gene frequencies were calculated to be .073, .011, .561, and .355 for A-, B-, C-, D-type GPIb. Portions from each type of GPIb molecule (alpha-chain and glycocalicin) showed heterogeneity with the same molecular weight difference, indicating that the variance would be derived from the polypeptide portion that is exposed to the outer medium. The different types of GPIb were the same with respect to their accessibility to lactoperoxidase, reactivity to lectins, and affinity to TLCK-thrombin. Although Bolin et al reported patients with a bleeding tendency whose platelets have double GPIb bands, here we found that platelets with different GPIb phenotypes showed no significant differences in aggregating activity and platelet retention. Analysis of GPIb phenotype should be important for structural and physiologic studies on GPIb and glycocalicin.

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