Common pathway

Topic Completed: 1 June 2012

Minor changes: 14 September 2020

Copyright: 2002-2020,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Common pathway [title] coagulation

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Cite this page: Parsons JC. Common pathway. website. Accessed November 26th, 2020.
Definition / general
  • Involves fibrinogen (factor I), factors II (prothrombin), V, X
  • Thrombin converts soluble fibrinogen to insoluble fibrin
    • Releases fibrinopeptides A and B
  • Remaining fibrin monomers polymerize to form fibrin
  • Thrombin also binds to antithrombin, which inhibits thrombin to prevent excessive clotting
  • Thrombin may also activate factor XI (part of intrinsic pathway), factors V, VIII, XIII, XI and platelets
  • Factor XIII cross links fibrin to increase stability of fibrin clot
  • While both PT and aPTT include the common pathway, the PT is a more sensitive screening test for common pathway problems
Diagrams / tables

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Intrinsic, common and extrinsic pathways

In vivo coagulation cascade

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