Southwest Research Institute was
awarded a $4.4 million contract from the U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to develop a
nasal-delivery, first-line treatment system to combat cyanide poisoning.
Current treatments approved by the Food
and Drug Administration for cyanide poisoning must be administered
intravenously by qualified medical personnel. The development of a nasal
formulation could potentially save lives by allowing a metered dosage to be
administered immediately in the field.
“The goal of this effort is to
successfully develop a supply and nasal formulation of amyl nitrite,” says
Joe McDonough, principal investigator and director of SwRI’s Microencapsulation
and Nanomaterials Department. “Amyl nitrite is relatively low cost, easily
administered and broadly effective.
“Amyl nitrite can be administered
intra-nasally by an individual to rapidly treat large numbers of casualties
quickly and effectively. The amyl nitrite, supplied in a simple nasal delivery
system, could easily be used to treat numerous victims by simple nasal
instillation, and is very well suited even for self administration.”
The Institute will demonstrate the
safety and efficacy against cyanide exposure in two animal models to clarify a
development strategy for amyl nitrite with FDA.
The contract, awarded August 30, 2011, has a 15-month base period through
December 2012 with options to extend an additional four years and up to $21
Southwest Research Institute, www.swri.org