Cardiovascular drug highlight: hirudin.

Hirudin is a polypeptide of 65 to 66 amino acids derived from the saliva of the medicinal leech Hirudo medicinalis. It is the most potent naturally occurring specific inhibitor of thrombin. Through genetic engineering, recombinant forms of hirudin (r-hirudin) have been made available in sufficient quantities for therapeutic use. Because hirudin is capable… CONTINUE READING