Medical device firm expands neonatal research through NIH grant
May 4, 2010
INDIANAPOLIS and WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Officials of SonarMed™ Inc. announced Tuesday (May 4) that the company will expand its neonatal research through a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant.
The grant totals approximately $450,000 over two years and is specifically intended to allow SonarMed to adapt the SonarMed Airway Monitoring System (AMS) for use in neonatal patients. SonarMed™ is the medical device developer behind the SonarMed AMS.
"We are delighted to receive this grant award from the NIH," said Andrew Cothrel, SonarMed president and CEO. "The NIH has been a strong supporter of the technology, and we are all very excited to have the opportunity to bring the technology to the neonatal market, where the clinical needs are the greatest. This grant also allows us to continue our track record of capital efficiency, which is particularly useful in the current financial market conditions."
Dr. Jeffrey Mansfield, SonarMed co-founder and CTO, said continued research in the neonatal area is vital.
"When we first began this project at Purdue University in the early '90s, our focus was on the neonatal patient," Mansfield said. "While the use of breathing tubes can result in complications for any patient, the risks are magnified for the neonatal patient. I am gratified that the NIH also sees this critical clinical need, and the support from the NIH will help us continue to improve the medical care for newborns in the critical first weeks of their lives."
The SonarMed AMS uses acoustic technology to continuously monitor breathing tubes. The AMS may be used to assist clinicians in preventing and detecting conditions that can harm the patient, such as movement of the breathing tube, which can result in ventilation failure or lung damage, and obstruction of the breathing tube, which can deprive the patient of needed oxygen.
Compared with the conventional standards of care and available patient information, having this type of adjunctive information about the breathing tube provides clinicians with a more immediate and complete picture of the patient's respiratory support status. This is especially critical for neonatal patients because slight movements of the breathing tube in their small, short tracheas can lead to potentially serious complications.
The technology was developed at Purdue University in the laboratory of George R. Wodicka, professor and head of the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering. It was licensed through the Purdue Research Foundation's Office of Technology Commercialization.
"The technology behind the SonarMed AMS is another example of an important discovery from Purdue University moving through the commercialization process and to the public where it can help people, in this case the very young and often the most vulnerable," said Joseph B. Hornett, senior vice president, treasurer and COO of the Purdue Research Foundation.
Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization contact: Cynthia Sequin, 765-588-3340, email@example.com