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USD researchers recognized for Vitamin C use on stents

VERMILLION — Two University of South Dakota researchers are working on a technique to lower the risk of blood clots in arteries implanted with stents.

Eagappanath Thiruppathi, a Ph.D. student, and Gopinath Mani, Ph.D., an assistant professor of biomedical engineering, have developed a way to coat stents with vitamin C so they function more efficiently in preventing blood clots in stented arteries.

The American Chemical Society recently printed an article about their research in the ACS journal Langmuir.

Previous studies have shown that vitamin C is a possible alternative or addition to drugs currently used to coat stents, which are little mesh tubes inserted into blood vessels to prop them open. Today's stents are an improvement from older versions as they are coated with pharmaceuticals that can prevent arteries from reclogging.

According to ACS, about 10,000 to 50,000 people who receive these drug-rinsing stents develop late stent thrombosis, a potentially fatal complication that happens when clots form and clog the arteries.

Drugs used on the stents are helpful in most cases but they might be responsible for causing problems in others, according to Thiruppathi and Mani. The duo set out to find a way to address LST using vitamin C. They discovered that the method of coating a common stent material with vitamin C could help patients as the stent slowly releases vitamin C over time.