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n. an anticoagulant present in the salivary glands of leeches and in certain snake venoms that prevents blood coagulation by inhibiting the action of the enzyme thrombin. The anticoagulants lepirudin (Refludan) and bivalirudin (Angiox) are genetically engineered forms of hirudin from the medicinal leech.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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