Tissue injury can result from a variety of external causes and radiological and surgical intervention. This injury in all cases initiates a cascade of cellular reactions that ultimately result in the programmed removal of the cells and tissues. Key among the cellular enzymes that propagate these cellular events is the induction of nucleases and antioxidant effects. Studies which are the basis of this technology have disclosed that the use of aminothiols and derivatives as either Zn-chelates or as the free compound provide protection by inhibiting nucleases and oxidative damage. Data support that the utility of the chelation by different aminothiol derivatives that results in inhibition of endonucleases and the protection against tissue damage resulting from radiation, as well as, toxic exposures and ischemia/reperfusion injury. Selected compounds have been tested in a cell culture system to support claims however in vivo data is currently not available that demonstrates activity against endonuclease activity. Since the activation of nucleases does not start immediately after the impact, but rather are activated slowly within several hours after cell injury, it is expected that the Zn(II) chelates will have a beneficial effect whether administered before or immediately after the insult leading to tissue injury.