Combination of aptamer and drug for reversible anticoagulation in cardiopulmonary bypass.
ABSTRACT: Unfractionated heparin (UFH), the standard anticoagulant for cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) surgery, carries a risk of post-operative bleeding and is potentially harmful in patients with heparin-induced thrombocytopenia-associated antibodies. To improve the activity of an alternative anticoagulant, the RNA aptamer 11F7t, we solved X-ray crystal structures of the aptamer bound to factor Xa (FXa). The finding that 11F7t did not bind the catalytic site suggested that it could complement small-molecule FXa inhibitors. We demonstrate that combinations of 11F7t and catalytic-site FXa inhibitors enhance anticoagulation in purified reaction mixtures and plasma. Aptamer-drug combinations prevented clot formation as effectively as UFH in human blood circulated in an extracorporeal oxygenator circuit that mimicked CPB, while avoiding side effects of UFH. An antidote could promptly neutralize the anticoagulant effects of both FXa inhibitors. Our results suggest that drugs and aptamers with shared targets can be combined to exert more specific and potent effects than either agent alone.
Project description:Anticoagulants such as unfractionated heparin (UFH), low-molecular-weight heparins (LMWHs), fondaparinux, and direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) targeting thrombin (IIa) or factor Xa (FXa) are widely used in prevention and treatment of thromboembolic disorders. However, anticoagulant-associated bleeding is a concern that demands monitoring and neutralization. Protamine, the UFH antidote, has limitations, while there is no antidote available for certain direct FXa inhibitors. Improved antidotes in development include UHRA (Universal Heparin Reversal Agent) for all heparin anticoagulants; andexanet alfa (andexanet), a recombinant antidote for both direct FXa inhibitors and LMWHs; and ciraparantag (PER977), a small-molecule antidote for UFH, LMWHs, and certain DOACs. The binding affinities of these antidotes for their presumed anticoagulant targets have not been compared. Here, isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) was used to determine the affinity of each antidote for its putative targets. Clotting and chromogenic FXa assays were used to characterize neutralization activity, and electron microscopy was used to visualize the effect of each antidote on clot morphology in the absence or presence of anticoagulant. ITC confirmed binding of UHRA to all heparins, and binding of andexanet to edoxaban and rivaroxaban, and to the antithrombin-enoxaparin complex. PER977 was found to bind heparins weakly, but not the direct FXa inhibitors studied. For UHRA and andexanet, an affinity at or below the micromolar level was found to correlate with neutralization activity, while no reversal activity was observed for the PER977/anticoagulant systems. Standard metrics of clot structure were found to correlate weakly with PER977's activity. This is the first study comparing 3 antidotes in development, with each exerting activity through a distinct mechanism.
Project description:Atrial fibrillation (AF) catheter ablation is performed in patients receiving direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) with intra-procedural unfractionated heparin (UFH) administration to achieve activated clotting time (ACT) at 300 s, as for vitamin K antagonist (VKA). We determined whether ACT monitoring might be transposed from VKA to DOAC-treated patients. Blood was taken from 124 patients receiving uninterrupted dabigatran, rivaroxaban, apixaban, or VKA or being untreated. DOAC concentration or INR (VKA) were measured. ACT was determined at baseline, and after spiking with UFH doses equivalent to 1000, 2500, 5000 and 10000 IU in vivo. At baseline, anticoagulants prolonged ACT differently, ACT was longer with dabigatran and shorter with apixaban despite similar concentrations. ACT strongly correlated with INR and dabigatran concentration, but not with apixaban or rivaroxaban concentrations. Moreover, UFH effects on ACT prolongation depended on the anticoagulant: dose-response curves in samples with VKA and dabigatran were parallel whereas ACT prolongation in response to UFH was significantly smaller with rivaroxaban and especially apixaban. Therefore, UFH to achieve ACT at 300 s might be transposed from VKA to uninterrupted dabigatran-treated patients but not to patients receiving FXa-inhibitors, especially apixaban. Targeting 300 s might expose to UFH overdosing and bleeding, questioning the current anticoagulation strategy.
Project description:An intimate interplay with platelets is an initial key issue for tumor cells in terms of hematogenous metastasis. Tumor cells activate platelets by different pathways and receive, upon forming a platelet cloak, protection from immune surveillance and support in metastatic niche creation. Therapeutic intervention with this early interaction is promising to antagonize the whole metastatic cascade. Here we aimed to investigate the capability of low molecular weight heparin (LMWH), unfractionated heparin (UFH), and a non-anticoagulant heparin derivative or FXa inhibitor fondaparinux to interfere with platelet activation by tumor cells. Coagulation-dependent and independent pathways of platelet activation by three tumor cell lines, and interference therewith were analyzed by fluorigenic thrombin formation assay, platelet aggregometry, ATP and VEGF release and endothelial tube formation assay. LMWH and UFH were found to repress various routes of platelet activation, reflected by attenuated endothelial tube formation. This confirms the duality of anti-coagulative and anti-adhesive properties of heparin. While non-anticoagulative heparin (RO-heparin) depressed platelets' ATP and VEGF release by contact inhibition sufficiently, fondaparinux just attenuated tissue factor mediated thrombin generation. Concluding, these data suggest that LMWH as a guideline-based drug for anticoagulative strategies in oncology is promising to provide additional benefit for interference with metastatic activities.
Project description:Unfractionated heparin (UFH) is a widely used anticoagulant that has long been known to potentiate platelet responses to subthreshold doses of platelet agonists. UFH has been reported to bind and induce modest conformational changes in the major platelet integrin, ?IIb?3, and induce minor changes in platelet morphology. The mechanism by which UFH elicits these platelet-activating effects, however, is not well understood. We found that both human and murine platelets exposed to UFH, either in solution or immobilized onto artificial surfaces, underwent biochemical and morphologic changes indicative of a potentiated state, including phosphorylation of key cytosolic signaling molecules and cytoskeletal changes leading to cell spreading. Low molecular weight heparin and the synthetic pentasaccharide, fondaparinux, had similar platelet-potentiating effects. Human or mouse platelets lacking functional integrin ?IIb?3 complexes and human platelets pretreated with the fibrinogen receptor antagonists eptifibatide or abciximab failed to become potentiated by heparin, demonstrating that heparin promotes platelet responsiveness via its ability to initiate ?IIb?3-mediated outside-in signaling. Taken together, these data provide novel insights into the mechanism by which platelets become activated after exposure to heparin and heparin-coated surfaces, and suggest that currently used glycoprotein IIb-IIIa inhibitors may be effective inhibitors of nonimmune forms of heparin-induced platelet activation.
Project description:The molecular mechanism of factor Xa (FXa) inhibition by Alboserpin, the major salivary gland anticoagulant from the mosquito and yellow fever vector Aedes albopictus, has been characterized. cDNA of Alboserpin predicts a 45-kDa protein that belongs to the serpin family of protease inhibitors. Recombinant Alboserpin displays stoichiometric, competitive, reversible and tight binding to FXa (picomolar range). Binding is highly specific and is not detectable for FX, catalytic site-blocked FXa, thrombin, and 12 other enzymes. Alboserpin displays high affinity binding to heparin (K(D) ~ 20 nM), but no change in FXa inhibition was observed in the presence of the cofactor, implying that bridging mechanisms did not take place. Notably, Alboserpin was also found to interact with phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylethanolamine but not with phosphatidylserine. Further, annexin V (in the absence of Ca(2+)) or heparin outcompetes Alboserpin for binding to phospholipid vesicles, suggesting a common binding site. Consistent with its activity, Alboserpin blocks prothrombinase activity and increases both prothrombin time and activated partial thromboplastin time in vitro or ex vivo. Furthermore, Alboserpin prevents thrombus formation provoked by ferric chloride injury of the carotid artery and increases bleeding in a dose-dependent manner. Alboserpin emerges as an atypical serpin that targets FXa and displays unique phospholipid specificity. It conceivably uses heparin and phosphatidylcholine/phosphatidylethanolamine as anchors to increase protein localization and effective concentration at sites of injury, cell activation, or inflammation.
Project description:Essentials Heparin-protamine balance (HPB) modulates bleeding after neonatal cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). HPB was examined in 44 neonates undergoing CPB. Post-operative bleeding occurred in 36% and heparin rebound in 73%. Thrombin-initiated fibrin clot kinetic assay and partial thromboplastin time best assessed HPB. SUMMARY:Background Neonates undergoing cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) are at risk of excessive bleeding. Blood is anticoagulated with heparin during CPB. Heparin activity is reversed with protamine at the end of CPB. Paradoxically, protamine also inhibits blood coagulation when it is dosed in excess of heparin. Objectives To evaluate heparin-protamine balance in neonates undergoing CPB by using research and clinical assays, and to determine its association with postoperative bleeding. Patients/Methods Neonates undergoing CPB in the first 30 days of life were studied. Blood samples were obtained during and after surgery. Heparin-protamine balance was assessed with calibrated automated thrombography, thrombin-initiated fibrin clot kinetic assay (TFCK), activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT), anti-FXa activity, and thromboelastometry. Excessive postoperative bleeding was determined by measurement of chest tube output or the development of cardiac tamponade. Results and Conclusions Of 44 neonates enrolled, 16 (36%) had excessive postoperative bleeding. The TFCK value was increased. By heparin in neonatal blood samples, but was only minimally altered by excess protamine. Therefore, it reliably measured heparin in samples containing a wide range of heparin and protamine concentrations. The APTT most closely correlated with TFCK results, whereas anti-FXa and thromboelastometry assays were less correlative. The TFCK and APTT assay also consistently detected postoperative heparin rebound, providing an important continued role for these long-established coagulation tests in the management of postoperative bleeding in neonates requiring cardiac surgical repair. None of the coagulation tests predicted the neonates who experienced postoperative bleeding, reflecting the multifactorial causes of bleeding in this population.
Project description:Andexanet alfa is a recombinant factor Xa decoy protein, designed to reverse bleeding associated with oral anti-Xa agents. Andexanet alfa is also reported to neutralize the effects of heparin-related drugs. This study focused on the neutralization profiles of unfractionated heparin (UFH), enoxaparin, and, a chemically synthetic pentasaccharide, fondaparinux by andexanet alfa. Whole blood clotting studies were carried out using thromboelastography (TEG) and activated clotting time (ACT). The anticoagulant profile of UFH, enoxaparin, and fondaparinux was studied using the activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), thrombin time (TT), and amidolytic anti-Xa, and anti-IIa methods. Thrombin generation inhibition was studied using the calibrated automated thrombogram system. Reversal of each of these agents was studied by supplementing andexanet alfa at 100 µg/mL. In the TEG, andexanet alfa produced almost a complete reversal of the anticoagulant effects of UFH and enoxaparin; however, it augmented the effects of fondaparinux. In the ACT, aPTT, and TT, UFH produced strong anticoagulant effects that were almost completely neutralized by andexanet alfa. Enoxaparin produced milder anticoagulant responses that were partially neutralized, whereas fondaparinux did not produce any sizeable effects. In the anti-Xa and anti-IIa assays, UFH exhibited partial neutralization whereas enoxaparin and fondaparinux did not show any neutralization. All agents produced varying degrees of the inhibition of thrombin generation, which were differentially neutralized by andexanet alfa. These results indicate that andexanet alfa is capable of differentially neutralizing anticoagulant and antiprotease effects of UFH and enoxaparin in an assay-dependent manner. However, andexanet alfa is incapable of neutralizing the anti-Xa effects of fondaparinux.
Project description:Potent and rapid-onset anticoagulation is required for several clinical settings, including cardiopulmonary bypass surgery. In addition, because anticoagulation is associated with increased bleeding following surgery, the ability to rapidly reverse such robust anticoagulation is also important. Previously, we observed that no single aptamer was as potent as heparin for anticoagulating blood. However, we discovered that combinations of two aptamers were as potent as heparin. Herein, we sought to combine two individual anticoagulant aptamers into a single bivalent RNA molecule in an effort to generate a single molecule that retained the potent anticoagulant activity of the combination of individual aptamers. We created four bivalent aptamers that can inhibit Factor X/Xa and prothrombin/thrombin and anticoagulate plasma, as well as the combination of individual aptamers. Detailed characterization of the shortest bivalent aptamer indicates that each aptamer retains full binding and functional activity when presented in the bivalent context. Finally, reversal of this bivalent aptamer with a single antidote was explored, and anticoagulant activity could be rapidly turned off in a dose-dependent manner. These studies demonstrate that bivalent anticoagulant aptamers represent a novel and potent approach to actively and reversibly control coagulation.
Project description:Heparin, a high-molecular weight acidic polysaccharide, has raised much interest in the field of biomedical research due to its multiple bio-functions. The anticoagulant application of heparin in routine clinical practice, however, has been limited as the large molecular size of heparin can reduce its subcutaneous bioavailability and lead to severe adverse consequences such as thrombocytopenia. Here, we report a highly efficient and convenient method to depolymerize high-molecular weight, unfractionated heparin (UFH), into low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) by combining physical ultrasonic treatment with the chemical Fenton reaction, referred to as sono-Fenton. We found that this combination treatment synergistically degraded UFH into a LMWH of 4.87?kDa within 20?min. We characterized the mechanism of sono-Fenton heparin degradation through multiple approaches, including HPLC-SAX, disaccharide composition, FT-IR, NMR and top-down analysis, and found that the uronic acid residue in heparin was the most susceptible site attacked by OH radicals produced in the sono-Fenton process. Importantly, the LMWH prepared by this method had significantly higher anticoagulant activity than UFH and other LMWHs. This approach represents an effective method to produce heparin with improved activity and should be potentially useful for heparin production in the pharmaceutical industry.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: An oral, single dose of 7.5 mg kg(-1) of unfractionated heparin (UFH) reduces thrombosis by 50% in a rat model of venous thrombosis. As long-term use is required clinically, our objectives were to study the antithrombotic effects following repeated oral UFH administration. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Bovine lung UFH was administered by oral gavage to rats in 3 doses of 7.5 mg kg(-1) each 12, 24, 48, and 72 h apart; and in 3 or 15 doses of 1 mg kg(-1) every 48 h. The last dose was given immediately after thrombus initiation where 10% formalin in methanol was applied to the jugular vein. The vessel was examined for thrombosis 4 h later. Amounts of heparin in tissue and endothelium, and plasma anticoagulant activity were measured. KEY RESULTS: When 3 x 7.5 mg kg(-1) heparin was given, thrombotic incidence was most reduced at 48 h dose-intervals and was significantly less than single dose treatment. There was a negative correlation between endothelial heparin content and thrombotic incidence, but not anticoagulant activity. When 3 doses of 1 mg kg(-1) every 48 h were given, thrombotic incidence was similar to single dose treatment. When 15 doses were given, total thrombotic incidence was less than for 3 doses and was similar to that after s.c. administration. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Antithrombotic activity increased with repeated doses of oral UFH, with antithrombotic effects similar to s.c. administration. Antithrombotic activity was related to heparin on endothelium.