A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

Oxygen Biotherapeutics (Costa Mesa, California) said it has hired Army Reserve officer Kirk Harrington, a Special Operations Force field-grade officer, diplomat, and government advisor as head of its newly-established warfighter division.

The new warfighter division is a result of the Purple Heart Injury Laboratory (PHIL) initiative between the company and Virginia Commonwealth University (Richmond) reported last month to establish a federal defense appropriation-funded joint venture focusing on developing new treatments for military battlefield injuries. PHIL will be jointly managed and operated research laboratories focusing on healing battlefield injuries with new therapies and concepts.

Harrington is an 18-year army veteran who in 2006 was appointed by the U.S. Department of State as a senior adviser to the government of Iraq. As the sole diplomat to the Iraqi Ministries of Transportation and Construction and Housing, he oversaw every facet of Iraqi reconstruction efforts to include new implementation of roads and bridges, ports, airfields and railroads. His background includes lecturing on Middle Eastern affairs at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point and he is a founding member of Emerging Foreign Market Collaboration, a New York-based government consulting firm.

Chris Stern, the company's CEO/chairman, said Harrington's role will be to connect the company with military research efforts and help it with sources of government funding for the military-related applications of Oxycyte such as blast-related traumatic brain injury (TBI), decompression sickness, and wound treatment.

"It's my expectation that Kirk's efforts will be more than self-supporting and that this division will become an important revenue generator for the company," Stern said. "He has outstanding contacts in the Department of Defense and other parts of the federal government along with a disciplined approach to getting things done. I'm looking forward to Kirk putting those assets to work in helping the company with its product development plans."

Oxygen Biotherapeutics is developing Oxycyte, a perfluorocarbon therapeutic oxygen carrier and liquid ventilation product, and an implantable glucose sensor.

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