Scientists in Australia and Canada have found a new way of stopping blood clots from forming in the brains of animals, which is expected to lead to improved therapies for humans.
In a study published in the journal Nature Communications, researchers from the University of Western Australia and the University and College of England found that using nanoparticles made of silver nanoparticles or silver salts in the blood can inhibit clotting in the heart and lungs.
The nanoparticles are made up of silver salts and silver nanoparticle particles, which form a silver-coated layer over blood vessels, which act as barriers to clotting.
These barriers, called nanostructures, have been shown to stop the formation of clots in animals.
“The nanoparticle silver is a non-flammable, stable and stable surface layer that has a specific structure to stop clotting,” said Dr Sarah Storck, a research fellow at the University.
“We think that this surface is able to be used to prevent blood clumping, but how it does this remains to be seen.”
The team was able to prevent the formation and spread of clumps of blood clotted in the human lungs, heart and brain.
The silver nanopramines act as a type of filter, meaning they bind to a different chemical called haptoglobin, preventing it from attaching to the surface of the silver nanopamet, and then to clot.
“Silver nanopamets are able to remove the haptoglobins that cause the clotting to occur, which helps prevent further clotting and increases survival,” Dr Storke said.
Dr Storkel said the silver-silver-silver nanostructure of the nanoparticles would allow them to bind to other substances, like proteins, which have a similar structure to the silver, silver-tin and silver-cyan nanoparticles.
This will lead to a new class of nanoparticles that could potentially treat many diseases, including stroke and heart attacks, and help prevent brain damage, according to the study.
In addition to its role in preventing blood clumps, the silver nanostraces could also be used as a blood clot barrier, meaning the nanopamethys could be injected directly into the brain to stop bleeding.
“It is a new type of nanoparticle that we’ve created and it’s a very exciting development,” Dr Martin Rutter, a professor of biomedical engineering at the university, said.
“In the future, it’s very exciting to see how this may be used therapeutically in the clinic.”
Dr Rutter said there was still much to learn about the nanosteryl nanopamewheels, but they could be useful in treating conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which affects up to 80 per cent of Australians.
“If we can find a way to use this in humans, we could possibly use this as an agent for treating some of these diseases,” he said.