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Wearable Artificial Lung to Be Developed at Pitt Through $3.4 Million NIH Grant


Contact: B. Rose Huber, rhuber@pitt.edu, 412-624-4356

PITTSBURGH  (March 19, 2013) ... Each year, nearly 350,000 Americans die of some form of lung disease, with another 150,000 patients needing short- and long-term care. Unfortunately, current breathing-support technologies are cumbersome, often requiring patients to be bedridden and sedated. 

Now, with the support of a $3.4 million National Institutes of Health grant, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh will develop an artificial lung to serve as a bridge to transplant or recovery in patients with acute and chronic lung failure. This is a wearable, fully integrated blood pump and lung designed to provide longer-term respiratory support up to one to three months while maintaining excellent blood compatibility. 

"Our wearable lung will be designed to get patients up and moving within the hospital setting, which is important for both patient recovery and improving a patient's status prior to a lung transplant," said principal investigator  William J. Federspiel, PhD , William Kepler Whiteford Professor of Bioengineering in Pitt's Swanson School of Engineering and director of the Medical Devices Laboratory within the Pitt-UPMC McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

Read the entire news release at the University of Pittsburgh News & Media Relations site.


Contact: Paul Kovach