Fibrinogen Baltimore III, a congenital abnormal fibrinogen with impaired fibrin monomer polymerization, displays a normal gamma-chain and a gamma-variant that has an apparently lower relative molecular weight (mol wt) than normal on sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Reverse phase high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis of the lysyl endopeptidase digest of the purified gamma-chains of fibrinogen Baltimore III revealed the presence of a peptide that is not found in the digest of the normal fibrinogen gamma-chain. Amino acid sequence analysis of this peptide indicated that the gamma-chain residue 308, asparagine, is replaced by isoleucine. Concanavalin A bound both normal and variant gamma-chains of fibrinogen Baltimore III, indicating that the carbohydrate moiety is not altered and is not responsible for the increase in electrophoretic mobility of the Baltimore III gamma-chain. This study suggests that the integrity of gamma Asn308 is critical for fibrin monomer polymerization, since alteration to either a basic (fibrinogen Kyoto I, Asn----Lys) or hydrophobic (Asn----Ile) residue results in significantly delayed polymerization of fibrinogen to fibrin.

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