Scientists have used microneedle arrays to store a live vaccine at room temperature, and
administer it through the skin of lab mice

Microneedles used to deliver live dried vaccines through the skin

By Ben Coxworth
February 8, 2013

While it’s vitally important to bring vaccines for diseases such as tuberculosis to developing nations, getting them there is only part of the challenge. Because these countries often have unreliable infrastructures, it’s entirely possible that the vaccines can’t consistently be kept as cold as is required. As a result, they could be rendered ineffective. Now, however, scientists from King’s College London have succeeded in containing a dried live vaccine in a microneedle array, that doesn’t need to be refrigerated.

Microneedle arrays themselves have been around for a few years. They typically consist of a small patch, that has a grid of tiny sharp points on its underside. Those points are made from a non-toxic dissolvable polymer (or another biodegradable material), that has a medication mixed into it. When the patch is placed against the skin, the points painlessly penetrate its top layer, then dissolve and release the medication into the body.

Read more: Microneedles used to deliver live dried vaccines through the skin — gizmag.

Home           Top of page