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NEEDLES IN DOCTORS HANDS TO BE REPLACED BY NANO PATCHES

Death knell sounds for needles

August 2, 2011 – 2:59PM

If the sight of a needle-wielding doctor heading your way freaks you out, take heart. The nanopatch is coming.

The needle-free vaccine delivery system is a step closer to reality after a consortium of investors put up $15 million to aid its development.

The money will enable Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology Professor Mark Kendall to continue his work.

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The nanopatch is a needle-phobe’s Holy Grail.

It has thousands of small projections to deliver vaccines to abundant immune cells in the skin, doing away with needles plunged into muscle where there are few immune cells.

Early stage testing in animals has shown a nanopatch-delivered flu vaccine is effective with only 1/150th of the dose compared with a syringe.

The nanopatch is also expected to cut needle stick injuries and cross contamination. And it does not need refrigeration like traditional vaccines.

Professor Kendall said the new technology would cut costs dramatically and make transportation easier.

“In Africa about half of vaccines aren’t working properly because of a breakdown in the cold chain,” he said in a statement today.

“The nanopatch also offers a way to stop needle-stick injuries during vaccination which again is a particularly important problem in Africa; with a third of vaccines affected by other complications brought about through cross contamination needle stick injury.”

AAP

Sourced & published  by Henry Sapiecha

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