Inhalation injury is an important cause of morbidity and mortality in the civilian population. It is usually caused
by the inhalation of smoke or toxic gases, such as carbon monoxide, hydrogen cyanide, nitrogen dioxide, etc.
Bronchoscopy is currently used as a standard approach for inhalation injury assessment. However, it fails to
provide submucosal and functional tissue information, both of which are essential for proper triage and selection
of appropriate therapy. Physical Sciences Inc., in collaboration with the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill,
proposes to develop a novel Endoscopic Multifunctional Optical Coherence Tomography instrument for Airway
Tissue Injury Management that will provide clinicians with real-time feedback regarding the morphological and
functional changes of the injured tissue. This instrument will complement qualitative bronchoscopic findings with
quantitative submucosal morphological and functional information, such as ciliary activity and compliance, which
will enable more efficient screening, triage, and therapeutic guidance of inhalation exposures.
The goal of the Phase I program is to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed technology for airway
inhalation injury assessment, while in Phase II an advanced clinical instrument will be proposed to be developed
and preliminarily tested on human patients of acute inhalation injury.