Hydrochloroauric acid trihydrate (HAuCl4 · 3H2O) and Minisart® syringe filters (0.45 μm; Sartorius AG, Goettingen, Germany) were obtained from Sigma-Aldrich (St. Louis, MO, USA). Earthworm (E. andrei) powders were obtained from a local supplier (Hwasun, Cheollanam-Do, Republic of Korea). Heparin sodium injection was obtained from JW Pharmaceutical (Seoul, Republic of Korea). All other reagents were of analytical grade. We previously reported the green synthesis of AuNPs using aqueous earthworm (E. andrei) extracts, the reaction process was optimized, and HR-TEM images of the AuNPs were obtained . This procedure, with a minor modification, was utilized in this study. The earthworm powder (150 mg) was dispersed in deionized water (50 mL) and sonicated for 30 min. The insoluble pellet was removed after centrifugation at 5,067 × g for 10 min (Eppendorf 5424R centrifuge, Eppendorf AG, Hamburg, Germany). The supernatant was subsequently filtered through filter paper and a Minisart® filter (0.45 μm) and then freeze-dried. The freeze-dried material was used to synthesize the EW-AuNPs according to the following procedures: the earthworm extract (500 μL, 0.3% in deionized water) was mixed with HAuCl4 · 3H2O (500 μL, 0.6 mM in deionized water), and the mixture was incubated in an 80°C oven for 11 h. The reaction yield was measured by detecting the concentration of unreacted Au3+ via ICP-MS, which was conducted using an ELAN 6100 instrument (PerkinElmer SCIEX, Waltham, MA, USA). The samples containing unreacted Au3+ were prepared either by ultracentrifugation or by filtration. Ultracentrifugation was performed in an Eppendorf 5424R centrifuge at 21,130 × g for 1 h at 18°C. Under this ultracentrifugation condition, AuNPs remained as a wine-red pellet, and the color of the supernatant turned colorless. The supernatant containing the unreacted Au3+ was then pooled and analyzed via ICP-MS. The EW-AuNP solution was filtered through a syringe equipped with a Minisart® filter (0.45 μm). The colorless filtrate was also analyzed via ICP-MS. ICP-MS analysis was performed in triplicate to obtain an average yield. A Shimadzu UV-1800 spectrophotometer was used to acquire the UV-visible spectra (Shimadzu Corporation, Kyoto, Japan). A JEOL JEM-3010 TEM (JEOL Ltd., Tokyo, Japan) operating at 300 kV with samples on a carbon-coated copper grid (carbon type-B, 300 mesh, Ted Pella Inc., Redding, CA, USA) was used to obtain the HR-TEM. The AFM images were acquired using a Dimension® Icon® (Bruker Nano, Inc., Santa Barbara, CA, USA) with an RTESP probe (MPP-11100-10, premium high-resolution tapping-mode silicon probe, Bruker Nano, Inc., Santa Barbara, CA, USA) in tapping mode. The mica (grade V-1, 25 mm × 25 mm, 0.15-mm thick) was acquired from the SPI Supplies Division of Structure Probe, Inc. (West Chester, PA, USA) and was used for the sample deposition. FE-SEM images were obtained using a JSM-7100 F with an accelerating voltage of 15 kV (JEOL Ltd., Tokyo, Japan). The samples were lyophilized with a FD5505 freeze drier (Il Shin Bio, Seoul, Republic of Korea). The FT-IR spectra were acquired with a KBr pellet of the freeze-dried samples using a Nicolet 6700 spectrometer (Thermo Fisher Scientific, Waltham, MA, USA) over a range of 400 ~ 4,000 cm−1. XRD analysis was performed using a Bruker D8 Discover high-resolution X-ray diffractometer (Bruker, Karlsruhe, Germany) with CuKα radiation (λ = 0.154056 nm) over the range of 20° ~ 90° (2θ scale). A tenfold AuNP concentrate was processed under an N2 atmosphere to assess the activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT) using a procedure adapted from our previous report .