Blood-vessel blockages are one of the leading causes of death worldwide and often lead to long-term adult disability, if not death. The major threats are the obstructions in the blood vessels of the brain (ischemic stroke), heart (coronary infarction), and lungs (pulmonary embolism).
Fortunately, there is treatment available for these conditions, although it can be problematic. The treatment for blood vessel clots involves the administration of thrombolytic drugs. These drugs break down blood clots – an action referred as “clot busting.” The caveat is the risk of bleeding since thrombolytic drugs are distributed throughout the body, breaking down even the good blood clots that prevent us from bleeding to death and promote injury repairs. Another issue is that the drugs typically need to be applied within few hours of the onset of symptoms, but the drugs are usually administered in hospital settings, making immediate treatment difficult.
To circumvent these issues with the current treatment option, a team of scientists in Boston has developed a potentially more efficient treatment, which they call shear-activated nanotherapeutics. Continue reading –>