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A hormone, thought to be produced by the kidneys, that regulates erythropoiesis, at least in higher vertebrates.



a hormone that stimulates the formation of erythrocytes in bone marrow. Characterized as a glycoprotein, erythropoietin has a carbohydrate content of 35 percent. It has a molecular weight of 30,000–40,000 and possesses antigenic properties. Erythropoietin is inactivated by neuraminidase, trypsin, chymotrypsin, and papain.

Erythropoietin was discovered by the French researchers F. Corneau and C. de Flandre in 1906 in rabbit serum that they tested after drawing blood. The hormone is found in low concentrations under normal physiological conditions, but the levels increase when the subject is in a state of hypoxia as a result of the loss of blood, a decrease in the oxygen content of the air, or various forms of anemia. Most scientists believe that erythropoietin is formed in the kidneys. When the hormone acts on stem cells in bone marrow, it causes their differentiation into cells of the erythroid series.


Fedorov, N. A., and M. G. Kakhetelidze. Eritropoetin. Moscow, 1973.
Normal’noe krovetvorenie i ego reguliatsiia. Moscow, 1976.
Gordon, A. S. Regulation of Hematopoiesis, vol. 1. New York [1970].


References in periodicals archive ?
The apparent link between Eprex and pure red cell aplasia (PRCA) was first made by a team of French physicians last February.
During that time, the overall incidence of PRCA in the countries where Eprex is used was 0.
Johnson & Johnson, which markets Eprex in Europe, said in a letter to doctors last week that it was aware of 141 reports of suspected pure red- blood cell aplasia.
So far, Eprex has been found to cause PRCA only among renal-failure patients that have received the drug via an injection, according to Carol Goodrich, a spokeswoman with Ortho Biotech Products LP, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson that manufactures the drug.
The factory, in Puerto Rico, manufactures Eprex, a drug that is used to increase the levels of red blood cells in people who are undergoing kidney dialysis or suffering from anemia caused by chemotherapy.
When Procrit sales are coupled with its European counterpart Eprex, they accounted for 10 percent of Johnson & Johnson's $33 billion in revenues for 2001.
Eprex is a registered trademark of Johnson & Johnson.
Roche's EPO products include Recormon and NeoRecormon, while Johnson & Johnson markets Eprex and Erypo.
Randomised, placebo controlled studies, and large, community based trials, have proven EPREX to be an effective treatment for chemotherapy related anaemia[2],[3],[4],[5] which improves Hb levels, reduces transfusion requirements and has a significant positive impact on QoL.
Table 13: Leading Categories in the Global Biologic Drug Market (2005): Sales in US$ Billion for Erythropoietins (Aranesp, Procrit, Eprex, Epogen, Neo-Recormon), TNF (Enbrel, Remicade, Humira), Major Cancer Antibodies (Rituxan/MabThera, Herceptin, Avastin, Erbitux), Interferon Beta (Avonex, Rebif, Betaferon/Betaseron), G- CSF (Neulasta, Neupogen, Neutrogin), Rec.
While a few of JNJ's products (Duragesic, Eprex, Risperdal and Cypher) face challenges in the near-term, Fitch expects the company to deliver strong financial performance, owing to the breadth and strength of its other products and businesses.