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Anti-clotting antidote to reduce risk of strokes

2nd December 2005

New anti-clotting therapy could bring hope for the millions of patients who suffer from the effects of blood thinners traditionally used to counteract the threat of blood clots.

The potential treatment is designed to prevent clots while also reducing the risk of the usual side effects of blood thinners such as strokes and heart attacks, protecting patients from uncontrollable bleeding.

Combining the anti-clotting drug and its antidote would improve the health of sufferers and make surgery, which is considered risky when blood thinners are involved, a safer option.

Volunteers at the Gill Heart Institute at the University of Kentucky took part in the phase one trial to examine the safety and tolerability of the drug and researchers say the results could have "far-reaching implications".

"This class of drugs is a very promising technology that allows for the development of 'designer' drugs and their antidotes simultaneously," commented Dr. Steven R. Steinhubl, the study's principal investigator.

Dr Steinhubl explained that an increase in funding had helped to speed up the development of treatments and said that reducing the risk of strokes and heart attacks would significantly help the recovery of older patients.