Biomacromolecules, Vol.21, No.5, 1762-1775, 2020
Self-Anticoagulant Nanocomposite Spheres for the Removal of Bilirubin from Whole Blood: A Step toward a Wearable Artificial Liver
Current therapy for liver failure and concomitant hyperbilirubinemia faces the challenge of poor hemocompatibility and bleeding risks associated with the anticoagulant injection. Herein, heparin-mimetic biomacromolecule (HepMBm) with a similar degree of sulfation and anticoagulant properties to heparin was synthesized by imitating the structure of natural biomacromolecule heparin. Then HepMBm was used to prepare nanocomposite spheres based on reduced graphene oxide (rGO). The formation of a dual-network structure in the spheres endowed the spheres with improved dimensional stability. The proposed spheres exhibited outstanding blood compatibilities and excellent self-anticoagulant properties. The bilirubin adsorption experiments and whole blood bilirubin removal assay indicated that the spheres exhibited high bilirubin removal capability from whole blood (The removal ratio was 99.69%.). The spheres open new routes for a therapeutic strategy without a plasma separation system and heparin pump, which may be a step toward a lightweight wearable artificial liver.