Chapter 9. Protamines


Agnieszka Gancarz, Dorota Bartusik-Aebisher, and David Aebisher
Medical College of The University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów, Poland

Part of the book: The Biochemical Guide to Proteins


Protamines are basic proteins because they contain large amounts of arginine, so they are cationic and can bind, for example, with sulphates. Their secondary structure may take the form of α-helices, β-turns and other structures not stabilized by intermolecular hydrogen bonds. It has been shown that abnormalities in genes containing protamine information can lead to male infertility due to the fact that chromatin in male reproductive cells does not reach the proper consistency. Protamine used as antagonism to heparin, so its administration prevents the anticoagulant effect of this substance, which makes it useful in preventing bleeding during cardiac, vascular and other operations – low molecular weight protamines are used.

Keywords: protamines, sulphates, anaphylactoid reactions, salmin, DNA, X-ray


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