Colloidal Confinement of Polyphosphate on Gold Nanoparticles Robustly Activates the Contact Pathway of Blood Coagulation

Bioconjug Chem. 2016 Jan 20;27(1):102-9. doi: 10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.5b00524. Epub 2015 Dec 15.


Platelet-sized polyphosphate (polyP) was functionalized on the surface of gold nanoparticles (GNPs) via a facile conjugation scheme entailing EDAC (N-(3-(dimethylamino)propyl)-N'-ethylcarbodiimide hydrochloride)-catalyzed phosphoramidation of the terminal phosphate of polyP to cystamine. Subsequent reduction of the disulfide moiety allowed for anchoring to the colloidal surface. The ability of the synthesized polyP-GNPs to initiate the contact pathway of clotting in human pooled normal plasma (PNP) was then assayed by quantifying changes in viscous, mechanical, and optical properties upon coagulation. It is revealed that the polyP-GNPs are markedly superior contact activators compared to molecularly dissolved, platelet-sized polyP (of equivalent polymer chain length). Moreover, the particles' capacity to mobilize Factor XII (FXII) and its coactivating proteins appear to be identical to very-long-chain polyP typically found in bacteria. These data imply that nanolocalization of anionic procoagulants on colloidal surfaces, achieved through covalent anchoring, may yield a robust contact surface with the ability to sufficiently cluster active clotting factors together above their threshold concentrations to cease bleeding. The polyP-GNPs therefore serve as a promising foundation in the development of a nanoparticle hemostat to treat a range of hemorrhagic scenarios.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Blood Coagulation / drug effects*
  • Chemistry Techniques, Synthetic
  • Coagulants / pharmacology*
  • Colloids / chemistry
  • Cystamine / chemistry
  • Factor XII / metabolism
  • Gold / chemistry
  • Gold / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Metal Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Polyphosphates / chemistry
  • Polyphosphates / pharmacology*


  • Coagulants
  • Colloids
  • Polyphosphates
  • Gold
  • Factor XII
  • Cystamine