Photonic NerveBond System for Enhanced Nerve Repair

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9550-09-C-0088
Agency Tracking Number: F074-033-0179
Amount: $575,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: AF07-T033
Solicitation Number: 2007.
Small Business Information
1 Riverside Circle, Suite 400, Roanoke, VA, -
DUNS: 627132913
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Patrick Cottler
 Principal Investigator
 (540) 769-8400
Business Contact
 Laura Rasnick
Title: Contracts Administrator
Phone: (540) 769-8431
Research Institution
 Massachusetts General Hospital
 Kris A Betres
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA, 02114-
 (617) 954-9353
 Domestic nonprofit research organization
Military trauma can result in peripheral nerve injury, including nerve laceration, requiring surgical reattachment.  Surgical repair involves excising the damaged section of the nerve, leaving a gap that must be bridged to recover nerve function. Standard of care for segmental nerve injury is to fill the gap with a donor nerve graft.  This leads to increased treatment time and loss of donor sight sensory function.  Due to complications of current techniques, there is interest in developing less invasive surgical repairs.  Photochemical tissue bonding (PTB) is emerging as an alternative to surgical tissue repair.  The objective of this program is to develop a PTB system for nerve repair.  PTB combines photoactive dyes with a visible light source to create fluid-tight seals between tissue surfaces, by generating covalent bonds when the dye absorbs light energy.  Positive results in nerves make PTB reasonable for improved military and civilian microsurgical nerve repair.  However, further development is needed in the light delivery. To address this need, Luna Innovations with the Wellman Center for Photomedicine will further the development of the light delivery system.  Luna will fabricate, optimize, and evaluate a light delivery device to deliver 360° isotropic dosimetry for nerve repair. BENEFIT: Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) has resulted in over 30,000 wounded soldiers to date according to the Department of Defense.  Extremity injuries comprise the majority of combat wounds in U.S. armed conflicts, including a current percentage of 54% in OEF and OIF.  Of these injuries, 53% were penetrating soft tissue wounds, and 4% were characterized as nerve wounds.  During the course of rehabilitation, many of these soldiers will require microsurgery that will include repairing blood vessels and reconnection of nerves.  Additionally, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons there were over 180,000 hand and microsurgical procedures performed in the U.S. in 2006.  Photochemical tissue bonding could improve the outcomes of these procedures by reducing surgical time and minimizing trauma.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

Agency Micro-sites

SBA logo
Department of Agriculture logo
Department of Commerce logo
Department of Defense logo
Department of Education logo
Department of Energy logo
Department of Health and Human Services logo
Department of Homeland Security logo
Department of Transportation logo
Environmental Protection Agency logo
National Aeronautics and Space Administration logo
National Science Foundation logo
US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government