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Erin Lavik, Ph.D.

AIMBE College of Fellows Class of 2014
For outstanding contributions engineering new approaches to treat injuries to and diseases of the central nervous system and internal bleeding.

Clot-building Nanoparticles Raise Survival Rate Following Blast Trauma

Via Case Think | July 1, 2014

CLEVELAND—A type of artificial platelet being developed to help natural blood platelets form clots faster offers promise for saving the lives of soldiers, as well as victims of car crashes and other severe trauma.

In preclinical tests led by a Case Western Reserve University researcher, the artificial platelets, called “hemostatic nanoparticles,” when injected after blast trauma dramatically increased survival rates and showed no signs of interfering with healing or causing other complications weeks afterward.

“The nanoparticles have a huge impact on survival—not just in the short term, but in the long term,” said Erin Lavik, an associate professor of biomedical engineering at Case Western Reserve. Other researchers had raised concerns that the foreign matter would interfere with healing, or form free-floating clots, but “we saw none of that.”
The research, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week, show the survival rate of mice models of blast trauma treated with the nanoparticles increased to 95, compared to 60 percent for those untreated.

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