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Press Release 06-149
Novel Laboratory Model Reveals Clues to How Blood Starts Clotting

Approach has potential to reveal mechanisms behind variety of reactions within the body

Scientists have developed a microfluidic system that successfully models blood clotting.

Scientists have developed a microfluidic system that successfully models blood clotting.
Credit and Larger Version

October 17, 2006

Researchers at the University of Chicago have crafted a simple model for predicting when and where hemostasis -- the technical term for blood clotting -- will occur. The microfluidic system that they created focuses on the interactions between blood and surfaces patterned to trigger blood clotting. It allows the researchers to separately monitor clotting in both blood plasma and a chemical model.

The researchers, led by National Science Foundation CAREER awardee Rustem Ismagilov, believe the methodology may prove useful in a range of studies, adding a powerful tool for predicting the dynamics of other complex biochemical networks.

The system successfully modeled the workings of a complex biochemical network by showing how the start of clotting depends upon localization of clotting stimuli. The researchers were even able to use the model to predict behavior that they later confirmed with human blood plasma, finding that blood can be exposed to significant amounts of clotting stimuli, such as tissue factor, without initiating clotting.

Lead author Christian Kastrup and his colleagues present their research results in the Oct. 16, 2006, online Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

For additional information, see the University of Chicago press release at: http://www-news.uchicago.edu/releases/06/061016.clotting.shtml.

-NSF-

Media Contacts
Joshua A. Chamot, NSF, (703) 292-7730, jchamot@nsf.gov
Steve Koppes, University of Chicago, (773) 702-8366, s-koppes@uchicago.edu

Program Contacts
Janice M. Hicks, NSF, (703) 292-4956, jhicks@nsf.gov

Principal Investigators
Rustem F. Ismagilov, University of Chicago, (773) 702-5816, r-ismagilov@uchicago.edu

Related Websites
Ismagilov group homepage: http://ismagilovlab.uchicago.edu/

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2014, its budget is $7.2 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 50,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes about 11,500 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $593 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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