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Severe Burn

The Severe Burn portfolio conducts preclinical and translational Research and Development (R$D) to deliver advanced, easy to use, drugs, devices, and clinical practice guidelines to reduce mortality, accelerate Warfighter return to duty, and improve long-term functional recovery and quality of life outcomes following burn trauma. Novel, acute interventions for use at the point of need are required due to the inability to deliver the severe burn injury standard of care (early excision and grafting) in the prehospital environment. The portfolio particularly aims to equip medics and lesser skilled first responders to treat greater numbers of more severely injured burn casualties under potentially prolonged care, in austere, resource-limited environments. Dual use solutions for military and civilian acquisitions, and preparedness for mass casualty scenarios are important considerations. Research priorities to improve burn injury management across the continuum of care include severe burn wound management, advanced burn fluid resuscitation, burn inhalation injury, burns of specialized tissue, and management of post burn complications and sequelae. Integration of multiple capabilities into a few tangible burn injury diagnostics and care delivery platforms as possible is of high military relevance.

Key efforts include:

  • Characterization of burn injuries resulting from emerging weapons; toward optimizing treatment and recovery
  • Advanced capabilities for limited volume and burn fluid resuscitation turned to individual casualty physiological responses to treatment.
  • Prevention of burn wound conversion and preservation/restoral of functional dermal structure
  • Promotion of a healing trajectory and acceleration of severe burn wound closure via novel therapeutic approaches post-burn.
  • Acute therapeutics to treat burn inhalation injury
  • Prevention/treatment of burn injury complications and sequalae; burn sepsis and shock, abdominal compartment syndrome, acute respiratory distress syndrome, burn hypermetabolism.
  • Delivery of decision support systems, and/or smart technologies to enable precision, individualized burn care, potentially automated, across the portfolio