Rapid Vaccine Delivery Can Be Achieved by Skin Patches

Release Date: 18-Sep-2019

The prevalence of Melanoma is increasing continuously in the US from Past 30 years. About 100,000 new cases of melanoma are diagnosed every year in US and about 20 peoples died in US every day due to melanoma. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, researchers have developed a fast-acting skin patch that efficiently delivers medication to attack melanoma cells. The testing of device is currently performed in mice and human skin samples. It is an advance toward developing a vaccine to treat melanoma and has widespread applications for other vaccines.


The researchers present their work on 25 august 2019, at the American Chemical Society (ACS) fall 2019 National Meeting and Exposition. According to Yanpu, a student who helped in the development of the device, the developed skin patch has a unique chemical coating and mode of action that allows it to be applied and removed from the skin in just a minute while still delivering a therapeutic dose of drugs. He again added that the patches elicit a robust antibody response in living mice and show promise in eliciting a strong immune response in human skin.


Topical preparations are able to deliver the medications to the skin, but they can only penetrate the upper layer of the skin and travel a small distance through it. While syringes are an effective drug delivery mode, they can be painful. Syringes can also be inconvenient for patients as assistance is required, leading to noncompliance.


Microneedle patches are prepared with a layer-by-layer (LbL) coating method. This is one of the easy, pain-free ways to administer treatment. With the LbL process, researchers coat a surface with molecules of alternating positive and negative charge. To form a skin patch, every adjacent layer must be strongly attracted to each other and also to the microneedle also.


For the preparation of melanoma vaccine, the researchers developed an antigen that includes a marker overexpressed by melanoma cells and an adjuvant, which creates a generalized danger signal for the immune system and boosts its response. After that they tested different LbL microneedle film arrangements of antigen and adjuvant in immune cells derived from mice.


 From these experiments, the researchers observed an optimum structure of LBL microneedle that appears to activate immune cells directly accessible in the skin. In living mice, these cells migrate to the lymphatic system and recruit other immune cells to attack the melanoma tumor. The next step is to test the patches on the mice.

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