Recombinant Production of Fibrinogen for Wound Healing


  • James Shanks


Fibrinogen is a critical protein that is necessary, with the help of thrombin, to facilitate the process of wound healing. Studying how fibrinogen clots in the presence of thrombin and other clotting factors is beneficial in developing new techniques and materials to improve the wound healing process, resulting in less scarring. Unfortunately, as part of the purification process, most commercial fibrinogen comes prepackaged with factor XIII or other clotting factors with unknown quantities. Given these factors influence the clotting process, a lack of detailed information regarding the quantities of these contaminants makes it difficult to interpret results. By incorporating the necessary genes for production of fibrinogen into mammalian cell cultures that can be grown in the lab, fibrinogen can be extracted and purified. Creating a means to produce fibrinogen in the lab that gives pure samples from which one can add known quantities of various clotting factors to determine exactly how it is affecting the resulting clot represents an important next step. Additionally, this approach enables the ability to directly modify the genes to modify the fibrinogen protein that would be expected to result in changes to the forming clot, the results of which can then be studied and associated with various diseases in which mutations in the fibrinogen protein are known to occur. By incorporating human fibrinogen genes in mammalian cells, growing cell cultures, and isolating fibrinogen, the fibrinogen obtained is expected to be useful in understanding of the various effects of the species involved in wound healing.