Body Heat-Powered Drug Delivering Bandages Means No More Needles
Imagine medication delivered without an injection or pill, just the ease of an adhesive bandage applied to the skin and later peeled away. That is the idea being tested out at Purdue University's Birck Nanotechnology Center. The innovation is not the idea of a patch with medication, that concept has is currently in use, but the incorporation of a built-in, powered delivery system in an adhesive bandage. In this case, the delivery mechanism uses yeast, sugar, water, and the person’s own body heat. Part of the bandage contains yeast and sugar, and with the addition of water and warmth, the yeast will produce carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide trapped within the layers of the bandage causes pressure. That pressure can be the driving force delivering medication through tiny microneedles that the patient doesn’t even feel. Then, as simply as peeling away any other adhesive bandage, the patch can be removed. With a bit more research and development these bandages could be a simple, hygienic, and inexpensive way to administer medications.