New Nanotechnology Drug Busts Heart Attack-Causing Clots

Researchers have found a way to unclog obstructed blood vessels, leading to heart attacks and strokes, by the use of a low-dose drug delivery system.

Article written by guest writer Rin Mitchell

What’s the Latest Development?

Researchers have found a way to unclog obstructed blood vessels that lead to heart attacks and strokes. These obstructions can lead to shear stress, "attracting platelets that form blood clots." The body contains natural clot producing mechanisms, and scientists “used an approved clot-targeting therapy called tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, and found that the system allowed for use of less than one-fiftieth the normal dose to dissolve clots.” Medicines used in hospitals to unclog vessels are given in larger doses, which cause serious side effects like excessive bleeding. The drug delivery method “called shear-activated nanotherapeutics, is a bundle of tiny drug-coated particles that travel together until they reach the obstruction, when the shear stress causes them to break apart and attack clots.” The low dosage required will allow more patients to be treated with the medicine. 

What’s the Big Idea?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease and stroke is one of the leading causes of death among Americans. Scientists have found ways to target platelets that form blood clots due to a force of shear stress, by the use of a low-dose drug delivery method that activates when the condition takes place. Researchers believe the system could possibly be used to deliver any drug for various diseases. However, only mice have been tested and it will be years before trial studies will be conducted on humans.  

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

The dos and don’ts of helping a drug-addicted person recover

How you talk to people with drug addiction might save their life.

  • Addiction is a learning disorder; it's not a sign that someone is a bad person.
  • Tough love doesn't help drug-addicted people. Research shows that the best way to get people help is through compassion, empathy and support. Approach them as an equal human being deserving of respect.
  • As a first step to recovery, Maia Szalavitz recommends the family or friends of people with addiction get them a complete psychiatric evaluation by somebody who is not affiliated with any treatment organization. Unfortunately, warns Szalavitz, some people will try to make a profit off of an addicted person without informing them of their full options.
Keep reading Show less

Neuroscience confirms your subconscious shapes your reality

Groundbreaking neuroscience confirms what Sigmund Freud first theorized.

Technology & Innovation

Groundbreaking neuroscience confirms what Sigmund Freud first theorized: that what we believe to be the objective reality surrounding us is actually formed by our subconscious. David Eagleman explains:

Keep reading Show less

In a first for humankind, China successfully sprouts a seed on the Moon

China's Chang'e 4 biosphere experiment marks a first for humankind.

Image source: CNSA
Surprising Science
  • China's Chang'e 4 lunar lander touched down on the far side of the moon on January 3.
  • In addition to a lunar rover, the lander carried a biosphere experiment that contains five sets of plants and some insects.
  • The experiment is designed to test how astronauts might someday grow plants in space to sustain long-term settlements.
Keep reading Show less