Fibrinogen Dusart is a congenital dysfibrinogenemia (A-alpha 554 Arginine-->Cysteine) associated with severe thrombotic disorder, high incidence of thrombotic embolism, and abnormal fibrin polymerization. This thrombotic disorder was attributed to an abnormal clot thrombolysis with reduced plasminogen binding to fibrin and defective plasminogen activation by tissue plasminogen activator. The purpose of this work was to assess whether clot architecture could be involved in the thromboresistance of the fibrin Dusart and the high incidence of embolism. An important change in Dusart fibrin clot structure was identified with dramatic decrease of gel porosity (Ks), fiber diameters (d), and fiber mass-length ratios (mu) derived from permeation analysis. In addition, rigidity of the Dusart clot was found to be greatly increased compared with normal fibrin. We provide evidence that both thrombolysis resistance and abnormal rigidity of the fibrin Dusart are related to this abnormal architecture, which impairs the access of fibrinolytic enzymes to the fibrin and which is responsible for a brittle clot that breaks easily, resulting in a high incidence of embolism. Indeed, when restoring a normal clot structure by adding dextran 40 (30 mg/mL) before coagulation, clot thrombolysis and clot rigidity recovered normal values. This effect was found to be dose- dependent. We conclude that clot architecture is crucial for the propensity of blood clot to be degraded and that abnormal clot structure can be highly thrombogenic in vivo. The alpha-C domains of fibrinogen are determinant in fibrin clot structure.

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