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Prof Koen (K) Mertens PhD

Plasma Proteins

Protein chemistry

Research interests

Structure function relationship of blood coagulation factor VIII and factor IX. Blood coagulation requires the coordinate assembly of complexes of activated enzymes and non-enzymatic cofactors on phospolipid membranes. The complex of factor VIII and factor IX serves to activate factor X in the propagation phase of blood coagulation. The severe bleeding disorder hemophilia is associated with with a deficiency or dysfunction of factor VIII (hemophilia A) or factor IX (hemophilia B). Bleeding episodes in hemophilia can be prevented or arrested by the administration of factor VIII or factor IX concentrates. Current research focuses on the the structure and function of proteins involved in these systems, with particular emphasis on the assembly and regulation of enzyme-cofactor complexes. In a related line of research the interaction of factor VIII and factor IX with cellular receptors that mediate clearance of these haemostatic proteins from the circulation is investigated. The experimental approach comprises functional studies employing purified proteins isolated from plasma, as well as variants obtained by recombinant DNA techniques in tissue culture. Molecular modelling is employed to facilitate structure function analysis and to generate more insight into assembly of protein complexes relevant for the process of blood coagulation.

  • Protein chemistry
  • Molecular modelling
1999-presentPart-time Professor in Pharmaceutical Plasma Proteins in the Deparment of Pharmaceutics of the University of Utrecht
1985-presentStaff member of Dept of Blood Coagulation; head of Dept of Plasma Proteins, Sanquin Research
1978-1985PhD student at the University of Leiden
Sanquin publications
Last edited on: 23 September 2013
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