Modern technologiesTechnologies

What to replace injections with?

What to replace injections with? Danish laboratory scientists have developed a new way to administer drugs
Caring for people with aichmophobia
Patented polymer lid

What to replace injections with? Danish laboratory scientists have developed a new way to administer drugs

We are generally afraid of needles. No wonder that specialists in the pharmaceutical industry have been developing methods that will be a more pleasant alternative to the application of certain drugs for many years. We will first answer the question: why until recently did we have to administer some drugs intravenously? First of all, we must consider the digestive enzymes as the biggest obstacle to the absorption of drugs. They digest the active substances of medicines before they enter our bloodstream. This is why, until now, only by injection into muscle tissue, we have delivered the drug into the bloodstream. There is probably no person who would not dream of an alternative to this unpleasant form of drug supply. Fortunately, there has been a breakthrough in this matter. All thanks to the employees of the Danish Technical University, headed by Professor Anja Boisen. What to replace injections with? They pioneered a new way of administering drugs.

Caring for people with aichmophoby

Aichmophoby is a panic fear of sharp objects, including needles. It is especially difficult for such people to go through a disease whose only form of treatment is the supply of injections. With such people in mind, Professor Anja Boisen, together with her research team, developed a method of protecting the active substances of drugs against digestive juices. When they reach the intestine intact, we will freely absorb them into the bloodstream. There is a chance that they will also deliver insulin to the body of diabetics using the same method. This hormone is an extremely delicate and at the same time a large molecule. In addition to digestive enzymes, the barrier to the effective penetration of the active substance is also the intestinal wall, which makes it difficult for insulin molecules to enter the bloodstream on their own.

Patented polymer lid

Danish lab technicians, led by Professor Boisen, had previously succeeded in producing microscopic polymer containers. These containers were made of safe medical plastic and the scientists provided them with a polymer lid. In addition, researchers have collected them in a unique soluble capsule. When we swallow it, the lid will dissolve due to a sudden change in pH and thus we will release the active substance of the drug. So far, studies have not confirmed the effectiveness of the above method in the case of insulin. This is due to the fact that such tiny containers are not able to adhere well to the intestinal wall. However, researchers have developed yet another method. It consists in combining them into a sheet, deceptively similar to bubble wrap. After rolling up, this foil will be placed back in the capsule and will remain in this form until the capsule is dissolved. Then such a “sheet” will stick tightly to the intestinal wall and insulin will be released in this way.

Scientists have now focused their research on the design of the foil, which would stick to the intestine for a long time. Thanks to this, we will be able to effectively release and assimilate the active substance of the drug. Professor Boisen emphasizes that it does not necessarily have to be a foil method, but an innovative 3D figure with protruding tentacles. So far, most research has been conducted with needle-free injection of insulin into the body in mind. However, this method may be used in the future to replace vaccines and other drugs administered intramuscularly so far.

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