Associate Professor and Chair Department of Pharmaceutical & Administrative Sciences
University of Charleston Charleston, West Virginia
Microneedle patches have been developed to simplify delivery of drugs that might otherwise require injection and thereby increase access to medicines. To improve vaccination, we have formulated microneedles measuring hundreds of microns in length with water-soluble excipients and vaccines. Upon application to the skin, the microneedles painlessly enter the upper skin layers, where they dissolve to release the vaccine and, upon removal, generate no biohazardous sharps waste. We will report on findings from preclinical as well as clinical studies of microneedle patch vaccination. We have also designed microneedles made of biodegradable polymer (polylactic acid) that encapsulates contraceptive hormone (levonorgestrel). Upon application to skin, these microneedles rapidly detach from the patch backing and remain embedded below the skin surface for slow hormone release for a month, thereby enabling self-administered, long-acting contraception. Finally, microneedles can be used to create transdermal micropores through which interstitial fluid can be collected as a novel source of skin and systemic biomarkers using a cell-free fluid that does not clot. We will present data on microneedle device development as well as results from interstitial fluid collection from animals and human subjects.
Upon completion, participants will be able to understand attributes of microneedle patch technology and how microneedle patches have been designed for different applications.
Upon completion, participants will be able to understand how microneedle patches can be used for simplified vaccination.
Upon completion, participants will be able to understand how microneedle patches can be used to self-administer long-acting contraceptive.
Upon completion, participants will be able to understand how microneedles patches can be used to withdraw interstitial fluid from the skin to collect biomarkers.