Tissue factor encryption and decryption: facts and controversies.
ABSTRACT Tissue factor (TF)-initiated coagulation plays a critical role in both hemostasis and thrombosis. It is generally believed that most of the tissue factor expressed on cell surfaces is maintained in a cryptic, i.e., coagulantly inactive state and an activation step (decryption) is required for the expression of maximum TF procoagulant activity. However, what exactly constitutes cryptic or procoagulant TF, molecular differences between these two forms and mechanisms that are responsible for transformation from one to the other form are not entirely clear and remain highly controversial, thus are a matter of ongoing debate. This brief review discusses pertinent literature on TF encryption/decryption with specific emphasis on the role of membrane phospholipids and reduction/oxidation of the TF Cys186-Cys209 disulfide bond in regulating TF activity at cell surfaces.