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Center for Resuscitation Science

The overall mission of the Center for Resuscitation Science is to improve the survival of victims of cardiac arrest by developing new, more effective treatments and therapies.

Sudden death occurs when the flow of blood to vital organs of the body quickly and unexpectedly stops due to cardiac arrest. Emergency rescuers currently have only four minutes to resuscitate these patients before it is too late to save the heart and brain. As a result of this four-minute time barrier, almost all cardiac arrest victims die.

Current therapies used for over thirty years focus only on restoring blood flow quickly. The newest science reveals that more cells die in the first minutes after blood flow is returned than die during the time that blood flow is stopped.

This means that emergency care providers need to focus not on how quickly we resuscitate, but the way we resuscitate, using new medications and therapies when blood flow is first restored that alter the life and death struggle at the cellular level.

The Center brings together basic scientists, bioengineers, and health care providers who share a common goal of improving our understanding of ischemia-reperfusion injury and developing new therapies and devices to enhance survival following cardiac arrest and other ischemic events (e.g. myocardial infarction, stroke and severe trauma).

Center scientists are committed to developing new medicines and devices for optimal resuscitation by:

  • understanding the underlying mechanisms of cell damage caused by sudden death from the level of molecules and DNA
  • discovering the way cells and tissues communicate with each other during stress
  • engineering new devices to better measure cell damage and recovery in human patients

To learn more, visit the Center for Resuscitation Science web site