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Definition of Factor VIII

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Factor VIII: Factor eight, a key factor in the process of blood coagulation (clotting). Lack of normal factor VIII causes hemophilia (hemophilia A).

The gene for classic hemophilia was long known to be on the X chromosome. Females carry the gene and transmit it to their hemophiliac sons. Female carriers are normal since they have another X chromosome that contains a normal gene to make factor VIII. Each of their sons has a one-half (50:50) risk of being a hemophiliac.

Because the gene for hemophilia was clearly on the X chromosome, it was correctly inferred that the normal gene for Factor VIII was on the X. Factor VIII is also known as antihemophiliac factor or antihemophiliac globulin.

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Reviewed on 12/4/2018

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