Innovative Microneedle Patch: A Needle-Free Solution for Drug Delivery
An Innovative Skin Patch Could Replace Needles for Drug Delivery
An innovative new skin patch has been developed by scientists at the University of Bath, which could revolutionize drug delivery by eliminating the need for needles and syringes.
The Microneedle Patch
The microneedle patch is a breakthrough technology that allows controlled doses of medication to be delivered directly into the body without the need for injections or oral administration.
Advantages and Potential
This new patch, made from a gel-like substance called hydrogel, offers several advantages. It can be 3D printed, making it more affordable than existing microneedle patches. The patch contains tiny needles that painlessly penetrate the skin, delivering the medication. When in contact with fluid under the skin, the needles swell, allowing a specific dose of the drug to enter the patient’s body.
Benefits over Traditional Injections
The use of needles for drug delivery can be invasive, expensive, and not suitable for everyone. Many people have a fear of needles, making them reluctant to receive their medication through injections. Additionally, needles can introduce pathogens, such as bacteria, which can cause infections, especially in individuals with weakened immune systems.
Dr. Hannah Lees, a chemical engineer at the University of Bath, aims to further improve the microneedle patch and conduct animal studies before proceeding to clinical trials in humans. She anticipates having these patches ready for patient use within the next five to ten years.
The microneedle patch has the potential to deliver drugs that circulate throughout the body as well as drugs that need to remain localized.
This groundbreaking technology could transform drug delivery by providing a painless and convenient alternative to injections. The microneedle patch offers hope for a future where needles and syringes are no longer necessary for administering medication.