Factor XI (FXI) binds specifically and reversibly to high affinity sites on the surface of stimulated platelets (Kd app of approximately 10 nm; Bmax of approximately 1,500 sites/platelet) utilizing residues exposed on the Apple 3 domain in the presence of high molecular weight kininogen and Zn2+ or prothrombin and Ca2+. Because the FXI receptor in the platelet membrane is contained within the glycoprotein Ibalpha subunit of the glycoprotein Ib-IX-V complex (Baglia, F. A., Badellino, K. O., Li, C. Q., Lopez, J. A., and Walsh, P. N. (2002) J. Biol. Chem. 277, 1662-1668), we utilized mocarhagin, a cobra venom metalloproteinase, to generate a fragment (His1-Glu282) of glycoprotein Ibalpha that contains the leucine-rich repeats of the NH2-terminal globular domain and excludes the macroglycopeptide portion of glycocalicin, the soluble extracytoplasmic portion of glycoprotein Ibalpha. This fragment was able to compete with FXI for binding to activated platelets (Ki of 3.125 +/- 0.25 nm) with a potency similar to that of intact glycocalicin (Ki of 3.72 +/- 0.30 nm). However, a synthetic glycoprotein Ibalpha peptide, Asp269-Asp287, containing a thrombin binding site had no effect on the binding of FXI to activated platelets. Moreover, the binding of 125I-labeled thrombin to glycocalicin was unaffected by the presence of FXI at concentrations up to 10(-5) m. The von Willebrand factor A1 domain, which binds the leucine-rich repeats, inhibited the binding of FXI to activated platelets. Thus, we examined the effect of synthetic peptides of each of the seven leucine-rich repeats on the binding of 125I-FXI to activated platelets. All leucine-rich repeat (LRR) peptides derived from glycoprotein Ibalpha were able to inhibit FXI binding to activated platelets in the following order of decreasing potency: LRR7, LRR1, LRR4, LRR5, LRR6, LRR3, and LRR2. However, the leucine-rich repeat synthetic peptides derived from glycoprotein Ibbeta and Toll protein had no effect. We conclude that FXI binds to glycoprotein Ibalpha at sites comprising the leucine-rich repeat sequences within the NH2-terminal globular domain that are separate and distinct from the thrombin-binding site.