Apheresis is a process similar to kidney dialysis in which whole blood is removed from a patient, filtered for a particular substance, and then returned to the patient. It is a common and safe procedure that is used routinely in healthy volunteers for the donation of white blood cells and blood platelets.
Apheresis is used therapeutically to remove harmful or disease-causing factors from the blood. It is currently used to treat several chronic diseases like high cholesterol, ulcerative collitis, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, and systemic lupus erythematosus. Therapeutic apheresis can be used during pregnancy if it is medically necessary.
TAC-PE: TARGETED APHERESIS COLUMN FOR PREECLAMPSIA
The Targeted Apheresis Column for Preeclampsia (TAC-PE) is an apheresis column that selectively removes certain factors from the mothers blood. Our patented technology selectively targets harmful substances while leaving the rest of the blood components intact.
To treat the patient, the woman's blood is pumped through an apheresis machine (1), which separates her blood into plasma and blood cells (2). The plasma is then circulated through the TAC-PE device (3), where the harmful factors are captured. The cleaned plasma is then remixed with the blood cells (4) and returned to the patient (5).
While the cause of preelcampsia is unknown, several biomarkers have been identified as playing key roles in the manifestation of life-threatening preeclampsia symptoms like high blood pressure, kidney dysfunction, and liver dysfunction.
APT's first therapeutic target is sFlt-1. sFlt-1 is a soluble antiangiogenic protein that binds and antagonizes growth factors like VEGF, a factor that is needed to maintain healthy blood vessels in the kidney, liver, and brain (the organs most affected by preelcampsia). Levels of sFlt-1 increase prior to the onset of clinical disease and then appear to correlate with disease severity.
Removal of sFlt-1 and other harmful biomarkers using targeted apheresis could alleviate the progression and/or severity of life-threatening preeclampsia symptoms. Keeping the mother stable for a longer period will result in the prolongation of the natural pregnancy and lead to the birth of a healthier baby with a better start in life.