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Problem Addressed

Bacteremia—the presence of bacteria in the bloodstream—is most often resolved by the host immune system. However, if left unchecked, bacteremia can lead to serious complications including sepsis, a highly lethal systemic response often triggered by the release of endotoxins from bacteria. Common treatments for sepsis include antibiotics, intravenous fluids, and vasoactive medications to increase blood flow to major organs. However, the mortality rate of sepsis (28-50%) remains quite high. The use of functionalized nanoparticles to rapidly and selectively bind and separate pathogens from blood is a novel and efficient alternative to conventional sepsis treatments.