New Nanotech Device Will Be Able To Target And Destroy Blood Clots
One problem following a heart attack or stroke is the presence of blood clots. These can trigger a recurrence. Medical procedures to address these life-threatening events need to be carried out in hospital units and, in some cases due to the risk of internal bleeding, cannot be performed.
A blood clot is technically known as a venous thromboembolism (VTE). It is a serious medical condition and some groups of people are more at risk than others. A research group have come up with a novel method based on nanotechnology to deal with blood clots. The method is easy to administer and it could be potentially given by medical staff on arriving to deal with a medical issue.
The developed device is a nanoparticle packed with a clot destroying compound. The outer shell of the nanoparticle is equipped with an antibody that is designed to target activated platelets (the cells that form blood clots.) The nanoparticles are given the lengthy name “poly(2-oxazoline) (POx)-based multifunctional polymer capsules.”
Once the nanoparticle reaches the blood clot, thrombin (a molecule at the center of the clotting process) breaks the shell of the nanocapsule. This releases the drug that wipes out the blood clots and prevents blockage to a blood vessel. The nanotech device is at the early design stage. However, trials on animals have been successful and the objective is to move to human trials in the near future.