Darexaban (YM150) is an oral factor Xa inhibitor developed for the prophylaxis of venous and arterial thromboembolic disease. This study was conducted to investigate the biochemical and pharmacological profiles of darexaban and its active metabolite darexaban glucuronide (YM-222714), which predominantly determines the antithrombotic effect after oral administration of darexaban. In vitro activity was evaluated by enzyme and coagulation assays, and a prothrombin activation assay using reconstituted prothrombinase or whole blood clot. In vivo effects were examined in venous thrombosis, arterio-venous (A-V) shunt thrombosis, and bleeding models in rats. Both darexaban and darexaban glucuronide competitively and selectively inhibited human factor Xa with Ki values of 0.031 and 0.020 μM, respectively. They showed anticoagulant activity in human plasma, with doubling concentrations of darexaban and darexaban glucuronide for prothrombin time of 1.2 and 0.95 μM, respectively. Anticoagulant activity was independent of antithrombin. Darexaban and darexaban glucuronide inhibited the prothrombin activation induced by prothrombinase complex or whole blood clot with similar potency to free factor Xa. In contrast, prothrombinase- and clot-induced prothrombin activation were resistant to inhibition by enoxaparin. In venous and A-V shunt thrombosis models in rats, darexaban strongly suppressed thrombus formation without affecting bleeding time, with ID50 values of 0.97 and 16.7 mg/kg, respectively. Warfarin also suppressed thrombus formation in these models, but caused a marked prolongation of bleeding time at antithrombotic dose. In conclusion, darexaban is a selective and direct factor Xa inhibitor and a promising oral anticoagulant for the prophylaxis and treatment of thromboembolic diseases.