ACS nano

Clot-targeted micellar formulation improves anticoagulation efficacy of bivalirudin.

PMID 25270510


Application of anticoagulants remains the primary strategy for prevention and treatment of thrombosis. However, high rate of bleeding complications limits their use. The peptide anticoagulant bivalirudin has been reported to exhibit a lower rate of bleeding complications than heparin, and it also has the advantage of not causing thrombocytopenia, which is a problem with heparin. Nonetheless, hemorrhage is the most common complication of bivalirudin therapy, and there is no effective antidote. Here we use a thrombus-binding peptide, CR(NMe)EKA, to accomplish selective delivery of the bivalirudin-carrying micellar nanocarrier to sites of thrombosis. Bivalirudin and CR(NMe)EKA, each with a PEG-lipid tail, spontaneously assembled into 30 nm micelles, which almost completely retained the anticoagulant activity of bivalirudin. The micellar formulations exhibited high stability both in vitro and in vivo. In a thromboplastin-induced mouse thrombosis model, the targeted micelles accumulated in lung thrombi 10-fold more than nontargeted micelles. Moreover, the micellar formulation significantly prolonged the half-life and thereby increased the bioavailability of bivalirudin. The micellar bivalirudin had significantly higher anticoagulant activity than free bivalirudin in both the lung thrombosis model and a ferric chloride-induced carotid artery thrombosis model. The specific targeting of thrombi demonstrated here makes it possible to increase the efficacy of bivalirudin as an anticoagulant. Alternatively, the dose could be reduced without loss of efficacy to lower the systemic exposure and improve safety.