Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The Trojan Clot-Buster: Drug-Coated Red Blood Cells Destroy Blood Clots From Within

12.08.2003


Thrombosis - the formation of internal blood clots - is a common cause of complications and even death following surgery. To create a better means of preventing thrombosis, researchers at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine coated red blood cells (RBCs) with tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), a clot-dissolving drug commonly used as an emergency treatment for stroke. When given alone, tPA has a short life span in circulation and has the potential to cause serious bleeding as it diffuses out of the bloodstream. The RBC/tPA combo, however, lasts ten times longer in the bloodstream than free-floating tPA and decreases the likelihood of excess bleeding, according to a new study.



"The idea of coating red blood cells with tPA was to create a Trojan Horse, a vehicle for sneaking tPA into the bloodstream that could not only add to the drug’s longevity, but would also allow it to be incorporated into a growing blood clot. RBC/tPA can dissolve blood clots from within," said Vladimir R, Muzykantov, MD, PhD, associate professor in Penn’s Department of Pharmacology and author of the study. "Our research shows that the Trojan Horse approach converts tPA into a potent killer of nascent blood clots, one that would pose a much smaller risk of causing internal bleeding."

In the August issue of Nature Biotechnology, Muzykantov and his colleagues demonstrate in animal models how the marriage of red blood cells and tPA has the potential of safely preventing thrombosis following surgery and as a therapeutic for victims of heart attack or stoke.


"If developed for humans, the RBC/tPA method could provide an ideal way of delivering clot-busting drugs, with fewer side effects," said Muzykantov. "In theory, patients could donate blood before surgery and receive their own cells bound to tPA following surgery, providing a safer alternative to blood-thinning medication."

Research has shown that preventing thrombosis helps to reduce mortality and morbidity in many diseases. Unfortunately, current clot-busting drugs have the tendency to cause excessive bleeding, either by causing bleeding outside of the blood vessels or by removing pre-existing and, perhaps, beneficial blood clots. According to the Penn researchers, RCB/tPA spares existing blood clots and is too large to cause damage outside of the bloodstream.

To coat red blood cells with tPA, Muzykantov and his colleagues capitalized on the ’stickiness’ of streptavidin-biotin, a protein complex used in laboratories to study molecular interactions. Streptavidin forms an incredibly tight bond to a tiny molecule called biotin, so the researchers ’biotinylated’ tPA and RBCs and used streptavidin to link them together. According to the researchers, the technique may provide a safe way of extending the longevity and safety of drugs within the circulatory system.

"Red blood cells can travel hundreds of kilometers throughout the blood vessels during their 100-or so day life-span. That fact alone makes the idea of RBC-bound therapeutics very interesting," said Muzykantov. "Moreover, red blood cells are relatively large, which makes it very difficult for drugs bound to them to burrow their way out of the bloodstream where they could potentially do damage."

Greg Lester | University of Pennsylvania
Further information:
http://www.uphs.upenn.edu/news/News_Releases/august03/clotbuster.htm

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Spread of deadly eye cancer halted in cells and animals
13.11.2018 | Johns Hopkins Medicine

nachricht Breakthrough in understanding how deadly pneumococcus avoids immune defenses
13.11.2018 | University of Liverpool

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

Im Focus: Research icebreaker Polarstern begins the Antarctic season

What does it look like below the ice shelf of the calved massive iceberg A68?

On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.

Im Focus: Penn engineers develop ultrathin, ultralight 'nanocardboard'

When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure

Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...

Im Focus: Coping with errors in the quantum age

Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly

The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

European Space Talks: Weltraumschrott – eine Gefahr für die Gesellschaft?

23.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

The dawn of a new era for genebanks - molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Fish recognize their prey by electric colors

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Ultrasound Connects

13.11.2018 | Awards Funding

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>