Capsule with needles can deliver drugs directly into stomach lining

the ONA take:

According to a new study published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, have developed a novel drug delivery system that involves a drug capsule coated with small needles that inject the drug directly into the lining of the stomach after being swallowed.

 

In the study, the researchers put insulin in the capsule and tested the delivery system in animal models. They found that the capsule delivered insulin more efficiently than a subcutaneous injection. They also did not observe any adverse effects caused by the capsule passing through the digestive tract.

 

The researchers suggest that this method could be used instead of an intravenous infusion or subcutaneous injection of a drug. Despite only studying insulin with the delivery system, the researchers believe that it may also be useful for delivering antibodies used to treat cancer and other diseases. Because antibodies are large proteins, they are nonabsorbable and are inactivated by enzymes in the gastrointestinal tract.

 

The researchers are continuing to develop the device so that the digestive tract squeezes the drug out of the capsule and the capsule disintegrates to minimize safety concerns.

Capsule with needles can deliver drugs directly into stomach lining
A novel drug delivery system that involves a drug capsule coated with small needles.

Given a choice, most patients would prefer to take a drug orally instead of getting an injection. Unfortunately, many drugs, especially those made from large proteins, cannot be given as a pill because they get broken down in the stomach before they can be absorbed. A schematic drawing of a microneedle pill with hollow needles.

To help overcome that obstacle, researchers at MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have devised a novel drug capsule coated with tiny needles that can inject drugs directly into the lining of the stomach after the capsule is swallowed. In animal studies, the team found that the capsule delivered insulin more efficiently than injection under the skin, and there were no harmful side effects as the capsule passed through the digestive system.

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