Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

The Trojan Clot-buster: Drug-coated Red Blood Cells Destroy Blood Clots From Within

Date:
August 12, 2003
Source:
University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center
Summary:
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.

Philadelphia, PA – 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.

Related Articles


"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."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center. "The Trojan Clot-buster: Drug-coated Red Blood Cells Destroy Blood Clots From Within." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 August 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030812073529.htm>.
University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center. (2003, August 12). The Trojan Clot-buster: Drug-coated Red Blood Cells Destroy Blood Clots From Within. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030812073529.htm
University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center. "The Trojan Clot-buster: Drug-coated Red Blood Cells Destroy Blood Clots From Within." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030812073529.htm (accessed November 24, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, November 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

AFP (Nov. 23, 2014) The arable district of Kenema in Sierra Leone -- at the centre of the Ebola outbreak in May -- has been under quarantine for three months as the cocoa harvest comes in. Duration: 01:32 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Misconceptions abound when it comes to your annual flu shot. Medical experts say most people older than 6 months should get the shot. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins