Under normal, healthy circulatory conditions, the von Willebrand Factor (vWF) keeps to itself. The large and mysterious multimeric glycoprotein moves through the blood, balled up tightly, its reaction sites unexposed. But when significant bleeding occurs, it springs into action, initiating the clotting process.
A team of Lehigh University researchers is working to characterize the mysterious protein known as the Von Willebrand Factor (vWF). In a recent paper published in Biophysical Journal, they advance experimental data for the shear-induced extensional response of vWF, using a microfluidic device and fluorescence microscopy.