IT has been established that human plasma contains an active fibrinolytic and proteolytic enzyme (plasmin), its inactive precursor (plasminogen), and also an inhibitor (antiplasmin) that normally over-neutralizes the enzyme1,2. Plasmin and plasminogen are associated with the globulin fraction, antiplasmin with the albumin. Fibrinolytic activity can be induced in plasma by the addition of chloroform, which destroys antiplasmin, or of streptokinase, which activates plasminogen. Activity also occurs spontaneously in human subjects who have suffered surgical operation3, trauma, fear4, strenuous exercise, or the injection of adrenalin5.
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