Life Lines by Dr. Dolittle

Sponsored by the American Physiological Society

Snakes to the rescue! Novel antiplatelet found in venom

antiplatelet snake

Photo of a Wagler’s pit viper By Gunawan Kartapranata (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

Platelets are important in the formation of blood clots. For this reason, antiplatelet medications are commonly prescribed for people at risk of developing blood clots, or who have already developed one. Many of the medications that are currently on the market to treat blood clots come with a risk for excessive bleeding and reduced platelet numbers. Researchers have now discovered an effective antiplatelet protein in snake venom that is not associated excessive bleeding. Trowaglerix is a C-type lectin protein found in the venom of Wagler’s pit vipers (Tropidolaemus wagleri). Their promising results were recently published in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology. The hope is to create safer antiplatelet medications.


C-H Chang, C-H Chung, Y-S Tu, C-C Tsai, C-C Hsu, H-C Peng, YJ Tseng, T-F Huang. Trowaglerix Venom Polypeptides As a Novel Antithrombotic Agent by Targeting Immunoglobulin-Like Domains of Glycoprotein VI in Platelet. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology. 37:1307-1314, 2017.

Categories: Illnesses and Injuries, Nature's Solutions

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s