Haemostasis is critical to normal health by preventing blood loss following injury and contributing to the maintenance of the vasculatory system, which supplies oxygen and nutrients to all parts of the body as well as performing other essential tasks. Thrombosis is the pathological variant leading to blockage of vessels, cutting off the blood supply to vital organs. Because of these important functions there is great interest in the development of new drugs that can prevent or cure thrombosis. Since platelet malfunction is a major contributor to thrombus formation and platelet inhibition reduces risk it is a prime target for new drug development. Many animals have developed naturally proteins or peptides that affect mammalian haemostasis. They use these mechanisms either to immobilise or kill prey in the case of snakes or to enhance blood feeding in the case of haematophagous insects or vampire bats. Often these proteins are effective in extremely small amounts. This book provides descriptions of a number of different classes of such proteins from snakes and insects and their target molecules on platelets, as a way of developing new approaches to anti-thrombotic drugs.
KeywordsPlatelet Aggregation Snake Venom Section Deal Pyroglutamic Acid Venom Protein
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