Human blood’s ability to create clots is considered a good thing since it helps in wound healing. However, blood clots can also block arteries, which can cause heart attacks and strokes, leading to disability and even death. Medical science has developed a number of clot-busting drugs which, when administered to a stroke or heart attack patient early enough, can save their lives and prevent brain and heart damage from getting worse than it already has become as a result of the initial incident.
Clot-busting drugs can have dangerous side effects, which is why they are administered only during severe life-threatening situations. However, according to a recent piece in ZME Science, researchers at the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute and Melbourne University have found a way to precisely deliver clot-busting medication to the site of the clot, thus minimizing side effects.
The biotechnology industry has been turning more and more to nanotechnology to deal with various ailments to which people are heir. In this case, a common clot-busting drug is embedded in a nano-capsule that is designed to go immediately to the site of the clot and destroy it. The drug can be administered by EMTs, therefore hurrying the unblocking of the blood vessels and thus restoring blood flow.
Thus far, the technology has passed a proof of concept. That means that it will have to be tested extensively before it shows up in a clinical setting. Nevertheless, it holds the promise to save many lives and prevent crippling disabilities once it becomes available.
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