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Battelle team wins DARPA contract to build medical device to treat sepsis

Tue, 08/06/2013 - 9:48am

At Battelle, supporting America’s military personnel is woven into the fabric of its business. In that pursuit, a team consisting of Battelle, NxStage Medical (NXTM) Inc. and Aethlon Medical (AEMD) has won a contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, to develop an innovative, new medical device that may save the lives of soldiers—and civilians as well—by treating sepsis.

The problem to be confronted is more severe than is commonly known—as many as 10% of combat wounds result in life threatening infections that ultimately lead to septicemia and/or sepsis. “This device could not only save many of our soldier’s lives, it could be profoundly important in saving thousands of civilian lives each year in the U.S. alone,” said Martin Toomajian, President of Battelle Energy, Health and Environment.

DARPA created the Dialysis-Like Therapeutics (DLT) program to develop a portable device that creates a holistic treatment for sepsis. The device is intended to remove blood from the body, separate harmful “dirty” agents from the blood and return "cleaned" blood to the body in a manner similar to dialysis treatment for kidney failure. DARPA has made significant investments in its DLT effort to date to multiple contractors for the development of key blood purification and diagnostic technologies that could contribute to the ultimate device.

This contract—which is funded in phases and could be as large as $22.83 million and last as long as four years—is for leading one of DARPA’s DLT System Integration projects. The project calls for Battelle and key subcontractors, NxStage and Aethlon, to design, develop, test and validate an advanced, portable medical device that exhibits the technical innovation for which DARPA projects are known, and to coordinate integration of key technologies developed during the overall DLT program. This funding does not include human clinical trials that may be required prior to military use and/or U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance for sepsis-treatment technologies.

Source: Battelle

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