Improving CPR: MCW part of collaborative team to develop new life-saving strategies

Oct. 02, 2013 College News - Researchers at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) are co-recipients of a five-year, $5.4 million NIH Director’s Transformative Research Award to investigate new strategies to minimize cardiac and neurologic injury after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

Demetris Yannopoulos, MD, Associate Professor of Cardiology at the University of Minnesota, is the primary investigator of the grant.

Matthias Riess, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Physiology; Tom P. Aufderheide, MD, Professor of Emergency Medicine; and Martin Bienengraeber, PhD, Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology and Toxicology at MCW; are co-investigators.

Surviving cardiac arrest with normal cardiac and neurological function is rare. One of the reasons is reperfusion injury, which occurs when blood supply returns to the heart and brain after being deprived of oxygen.

In this multi-disciplinary, translational project, the collaborative team will implement novel reperfusion injury protection strategies in cardiac arrest, investigating basic science mechanisms, animal model outcomes, and application in humans. Pilot data demonstrates significant potential to improve neurologically functional survival after cardiac arrest.

This multi-institutional project also includes researchers from the University of Michigan.

The NIH Director’s Transformative Research Awards program, established in 2009, promotes cross-cutting, interdisciplinary approaches and is open to individuals and teams of investigators who propose research that has the potential to create or overturn fundamental paradigms.

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