Dr Hans Vogel from the University of Calgary has attempted to gain a molecular understanding of why blood clots in an attempt to shed light on the mysterious process.
Dr Vogel and graduate student Hao Huang have successfully identified the molecular 3D structure in blood platelets and a receptor that sticks through the membrane of the cell to the outside, which build upon our understanding of the blood clotting process.
The platelets are small cells which specialise in clotting reactions, and the receptor protein directly controls the blood clot formation. The scientists were the first to successfully map this structure, which could help understand body's response to superbugs.
Dr Vogel, of the Department of Biological Sciences in the Faculty of Science, said: "Eventually the long term goal is to interfere in that, although one has to be extremely careful with such a delicate process. Oftentimes, these molecular structures are useful for pharmaceutical companies and for follow-up research projects that take them as a starting point to develop new drugs."