“I emailed a lot of labs and a lot of universities, asking them to let me do the research, but, I got a lot of rejections just because I was young,” says Deena Mousa.
One day, it happened. It was in New York, where she resides, in a lab at the Albany College of Pharmacy – one that finally agreed on hosting her, provided that she worked as an assistant for a year in their lab. It was only after a year’s lapse that she would be able to use their equipment to develop her own research project. “It was really exciting, and I got to design the whole thing on my own,” says the young researcher, who is planning to study molecular biology in university next year after fast-tracking through high school.
Having found in research science her biggest passion, Mousa became interested in treating wounds, as she wanted to “do something that impacted a lot of people but was not getting attention in the science world.”
“I had started doing research on blood loss and the ways we can stop it, because it is the second leading cause of death in hospitals and clinics,” she says. Her product, called Hemostat V-Seal, stops bleeding of lethal wounds in between seven and ten seconds, a ratio that is considerably faster than the one currently available in hospitals. “With the current standard of care we use now, it takes 15 minutes, which translates into litres of blood lost,” she adds.
“After a lot of testing and trials to discover the optimal ratio, I came up with a product that was faster and more efficient than what we use now.” The lapse between ‘I really want to research’ and ‘I found the component’ was only 18 months. She did it in a borrowed lab, alone, at 16. “Even if it’s the biggest wound, across your neck, within 10 seconds it will be completely clotted. It’s a liquid drop, and even for the most sever wound, it would require around five drops. It’s both efficient and incredibly cost-effective, as it costs cents to make,” she explains.
Deena has already submitted the necessary patent applications. She’s now seeking the approval of the US Food and Drug Administration and is ready to introduce her product in the market.
Currently, Deena is a freshman at Yale University, planning to study Molecular, Cellular and developmental biology. She aspires to conduct more exciting research and to make her product available for all those in need for it.