CMU leads research on combat injuries - CTTEC - Carnegie Mellon University

Friday, August 31, 2012

CMU leads research on combat injuries

Carnegie Mellon University is leading a Department of Defense-funded team looking at ways to treat pain associated with combat injuries.

Jeffery O. Hollinger, a biomedical engineering and biological sciences professor who heads CMU's Bone Tissue Engineering Center, is directing the research team.

The goal is to create polymer-based treatments to prevent heterotopic ossification — the unwanted growth of bone and tissue resulting from amputation procedures. Those formations create pain and discomfort in the area where a prothesis would connect to the limb, Holliner said in a news release.

CMU professor Krzysztof Matyjaszweski has developed a nanostructural polymer composite that would prevent hetertopic ossification from occurring in a patient's soft tissue, Hollinger said.

The university is working off a three-year, $2.93 million grant from the Department of Defense to work with researchers at the U.S. Military Academy, the University of Maryland and the Naval Medical Center to produce a therapeutic solution.

Heterotopic ossification is, of course, not limited to the military. More than 90 percent of people who get hip replacements in the U.S. also show signs of the problem, CMU said.

"We see this collaborative research as a win for both military and civilian populations," said J. Kenneth Wickiser, director of the Center for Molecular Science in the Department of Chemistry & Life Science at the U.S. Military Academy. "And we see this particular research project as a great way to help us change our research paradigm at West Point."

There is a patent pending on CMU's therapy and, once the platform is lab tested, a clinical trial schedule will be developed, the university said.


Article courtesy of Pittsburgh Business Times