I am
Thrombus-targeted theranostic microbubbles
heartfoundation.org.au|Helpline 13 11 12

Thrombus-targeted theranostic microbubbles

Breaking down blood clots

Blood clots, or thrombosis as it is medically known, is responsible for the majority of heart attacks and strokes.

Currently, blood clots causing myocardial infarction or stroke can only be visualised and reliably diagnosed via catheters inserted into the arteries, a procedure that is only available in larger hospitals. This often results in a delay of diagnosis and results in heart or brain damage. In addition, the currently clinically available therapy for heart attack or stroke comes with a substantial risk of complications occurring - particularly bleeding problems.
Fortunately, this could change with research being funded by the Heart Foundation. 

Researchers, Professor Karlheinz Peter and Dr Xiaowei Wang from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, have created particles that can detect clots and break them down within minutes.

They have developed 'intelligent microbubbles', which after injection into the veins, finds the clot, becomes attached to it, and then releases a drug to break it down. In addition, by using these microbubbles, doctors will be able to directly see the clot and thus monitor the success or failure of the clot-busting microbubbles on a regular, generally available ultrasound machine.

Dr Wang says there are several advantages to the ultrasound microbubble. It is non-invasive, carries no radiation-associated risks and has no side-effects such as an increased bleeding risk. Ultrasound scanners are also available in all hospitals and most outpatient clinics in Australia, therefore providing a safe, rapid and cost-effective technique for the detection of blood clots.

The microbubble she has developed will improve patient treatment and save lives and will also prevent bleeding in patients.

Dr Wang’s research has attracted significant attention, been presented at major cardiovascular international conferences and published in major international journals.

You might also be interested in

The Heart Foundation Alumni Program

The Heart Foundation Alumni Program

The Heart Foundation Alumni Program

Stay connected with your research alumni community. ...

GLOBAL CARDIOVASCULAR RESEARCH FUNDERS FORUM

GLOBAL CARDIOVASCULAR RESEARCH FUNDERS FORUM

GLOBAL CARDIOVASCULAR RESEARCH FUNDERS FORUM

FACILITATING INTERNATIONAL CLINICAL TRIALS ...

2020 Strategic Grant Recipients

2020 Strategic Grant Recipients

Heart Foundation Research Award Recipients

Heart Foundation Research Award Recipients

Explore our research award recipients and projects...

Managing your funding

Managing your funding

Managing your funding

Resources to help manage your grant, scholarship or fellowship....

2021 NSW CVRN Ministerial Awards for Cardiovascular Research

2021 NSW CVRN Ministerial Awards for Cardiovascular Research

Nominations are now open for the 2021 NSW Cardiovascular Research Network’s (CVRN) Ministerial Awards for Cardiovascular Research....

Our research stories

Our research stories

Our research stories

We fund amazing researchers who have important stories to tell...

NSW Cardiovascular Research Network

NSW Cardiovascular Research Network

NSW Cardiovascular Research Network

Encouraging cardiovascular research excellence in NSW ...

3 Minute Research Competition Terms & Conditions

3 Minute Research Competition Terms & Conditions

Queensland Cardiovascular Research Network

Queensland Cardiovascular Research Network

Queensland Cardiovascular Research Network

QCVRN provides a framework to strengthen cardiovascular research in Queensland...

Heart Health Check Toolkit

Heart Health Check Toolkit

More Australians die of Heart Disease than any other cause.

More Australians die of Heart Disease than any other cause.

More Australians die of Heart Disease than any other cause.

And the heartache lasts a lifetime. But you can help the Heart Foundation fund life-saving research to keep more families together....

Research Directory

Research Directory

Supporting Your Emotional Wellbeing: An Online Forum for Young Heart Patients

Supporting Your Emotional Wellbeing: An Online Forum for Young Heart Patients

Supporting Your Emotional Wellbeing: An Online Forum for Young Heart Patients

Apple & honey nut crumble oats

Apple & honey nut crumble oats

Apple & honey nut crumble oats

10 minutes
Serves Serves 2 (Makes 2 cups)

Heart Health Network

Heart Health Network

Heart Health Network

Heart Health Network is the Heart Foundation’s newsletter for health professionals delivered to your inbox once a month....

Sorting out your finances after a heart attack

Sorting out your finances after a heart attack

Sorting out your finances after a heart attack

Explore how to manage your financial concerns after a heart attack. ...

Absolute CVD risk clinical guidelines

Absolute CVD risk clinical guidelines

The Absolute Cardiovascular Disease Risk (CVD) Guidelines helps healthcare professionals identify, prevent and manage a person's risk of developing CVD. ...

Automated Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD or AICD)

Automated Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD or AICD)

This is a device inserted into your chest to return abnormal heart rhythms to normal using electrical impulses. ...

Our corporate partners

Our corporate partners

Our corporate partners

We value the support of all of our corporate partners....

Risk factors for women

Risk factors for women

Risk factors for women

In Australia, 90% of women have one risk factor for heart disease, and 50% have two or more. ...

Supporting Young Hearts

Supporting Young Hearts

Supporting Young Hearts

Advice from young people living with a heart condition....

Returning to work after a heart attack

Returning to work after a heart attack

Returning to work after a heart attack

Discover how to plan for your return to work....

Heart attack medication

Heart attack medication

Heart attack medication

There are a number of medications you could be prescribed after a heart attack....

Heart conditions in women

Heart conditions in women

Heart conditions in women

Like men, women can be diagnosed with a range of heart conditions....

What is plant-based eating

What is plant-based eating

What is plant-based eating

Learn about plant-based eating and its impact on heart health ...

Chicken recipes

Chicken recipes

Chicken recipes

Find heart healthy chicken recipes....

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Join the fight against Australia’s biggest killer by supporting the Heart Foundation.  ...

Seafood recipes

Seafood recipes

Seafood recipes

Find heart healthy seafood recipes...

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

There is no single cause for any one heart condition, but there are risk factors that increase your chance of developing one. ...

Register your cardiac service with the Heart Foundation

Register your cardiac service with the Heart Foundation

This cardiac services directory presents information on cardiac rehab programs offered across Australia....

Become a corporate partner

Become a corporate partner

Become a corporate partner

Partner with us to help us fight for Australian hearts....

Physical activity in the workplace

Physical activity in the workplace

Physical activity in the workplace

Resources to help you create a more physically active workplace....

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Explore the Heart Foundation’s guide on what to expect in the first month after your heart attack. ...

Strawberry fields oats

Strawberry fields oats

Strawberry fields oats

10 minutes
Serves 2

Mighty mango smoothie

Mighty mango smoothie

Mighty mango smoothie

National Action Plan for Heart and Stroke

National Action Plan for Heart and Stroke

National Action Plan for Heart and Stroke

The national heart and stroke action plan aims to identify and prioritise action to reduce the impact of heart disease and stroke....

Our strategy

Our strategy

Our strategy

Connecting Hearts Strategy 2021-2023...

Supporting Young Hearts Program

Supporting Young Hearts Program

Information and resources for health professionals who are treating patients between 18 - 40 years of age....

Medical tests for heart disease

Medical tests for heart disease

Medical tests for heart disease

Learn about the common tests your doctor may want you to have to diagnose your heart condition....