Blood thinners are common medications used in various health conditions including blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases. Sometimes a person can suffer from a condition such as a blood clot in the vein. This can lead to fatal conditions such as a stroke or a heart attack. In such cases, health professionals prescribe blood thinners to dissolve the clot and keep the blood flow to normal.
Even though blood thinning agents or anticoagulants are used to prevent life-threatening conditions, they can be harmful too. Their mechanism of action is to limit the production of blood clotting enzymes. These enzymes prevent bleeding but blood thinners prevent the production of these enzymes which leads to bleeding.
The latest study by Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland shows a new blood thinner. The researchers developed this anticoagulant which does the job of blood thinning. However, it does not cause significant bleeding which makes it different from other such agents.
The study recently published in Nature Communications.
The trials on lab animals are successful so far. However, the effect is not yet proven on humans. The scientists will conduct clinical trials to prove the efficacy and safety of the new blood thinner.
The mechanism of action of this new blood thinner is by inhibition of coagulation factor XII (FXII). This molecule starts clotting in the blood. Some humans lack this molecule naturally. In such people, there is a lower risk of blood clot formation. However, they do not suffer from excessive bleeding. Hence, it is safe to inhibit the production of this molecule.
Previous studies also presented new blood thinners to inhibit FXII. However, those agents did not prove effective enough in human trials. The latest research modified the previously available agent called FXII618. This new blood thinner is more effective and potent than its unmodified form.
The researchers tested the agent on lab rats and mice. The trials proved that the molecule is not toxic and safe to use. The researchers also determined the required dose of the molecule during the trials. The experiments also showed that this agent not only targets blood clots but also reduces bleeding risk.
The researchers also tested their new blood thinner on an artificial lung. These artificial lungs are used during the treatment of severe coronavirus infection. These are mainly useful to keep a person alive who suffers from heart disease. A drawback to the use of artificial lung is that it increases the chances of blood clotting.
The findings of the study showed that the new agent is safe to use in an artificial lung model. This molecule effectively prevented blood clotting without increasing the risk of bleeding. The researchers also mentioned that doctors can use this agent safely in the treatment of multiple conditions. This includes diseases like multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s.
Scientists obtained positive results regarding the new blood thinner in this study. However, they also found a drawback to this molecule. The molecule does not tend to stay in the body for a longer period. The body of mice eliminated this molecule from the body within half an hour.
This shows that the new blood thinner does not have a long-lasting effect. However, doctors can use it during surgeries and acute treatments. They can also use it while using an artificial lung to prevent any blood clotting.