ARLINGTON, Va.—The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, working with Arsenal Medical Inc., has developed polyurethane foam technology it believes could increase the survival rate of wounded troops in the battlefield.
The advancement came from DARPA's Wound Stasis System program, launched in 2010 to find a technological solution that could mitigate damage from internal bleeding. Materials supplier Arsenal Medical Inc. developed a urethane foam-based product that can control hemorrhaging in a patient's intact abdominal cavity for at least one hour, based on swine injury model data, DARPA said.
The urethane forms inside a patient's body upon injection of polyol and isocyanate into the abdominal cavity. As the liquids mix, two reactions are triggered, DARPA said. First, the mixed liquid expands to about 30 times its original volume while conforming to the surfaces of injured tissue. Second, the liquid transforms into solid foam capable of providing resistance to intra-abdominal blood loss.
During testing, minimally invasive application of the product reduced blood significantly and increased the rate of survival at three hours post-injury to 72 percent from the 8 percent observed in controls, the agency reported.
Arsenal recently received a $15.5 million contract from DARPA to continue the development work and support regulatory submission.