Brits are preparing an innovative vaccine for CoVID-19 in patch form

Microneedle patches are a pretty hot trend in medicine, although experts say it will be many years before it becomes widespread, all due to some limitations of this platform.

If your panicky fear of needles is holding you back from getting vaccinated for coronavirus, then you should be interested in a new solution just presented by experts from Swansea University. It is a patch that can be stuck to the skin like those used to fight nicotine addiction and worn for 24 hours. A working prototype will be presented by April and although we should not expect to be able to use it yet this year, in a less optimistic scenario that we will be vaccinated with Covid-19 as for the flu, that is every year, we will eventually have a less invasive way of administration.

Although theoretically we are still dealing with needles, these are so tiny that we don’t feel them – each is thinner than a human hair, so they pierce the skin barrier without causing any discomfort: – ‘They don’t penetrate the skin as deeply as a classic one and they don’t stimulate pain receptors, so they are less painful than a classic injection,’ explains nanotechnology researcher Olivia Howells from Swansea University. And what is most interesting in all this, the patch is designed because the user could stick it himself and monitor the body’s response. This last point is also very interesting because it turns out that the patch, in addition to administering the vaccine, also measures the inflammation that occurs in response to it by monitoring biomarkers in the skin.

– The ability to rapidly measure vaccine efficacy addresses a previously unmet clinical need and will certainly be an innovative approach to vaccine development. The real-time performance of this platform means rapid results allowing rapid containment of COVID-19 virus, explains Dr. Sharma. Also of note is the fact that the vaccine is expected to be easy to distribute and cheap to produce, which could help to significantly increase the prevalence of is administration, including in large poor countries where conventional medical outlets are hard to come by. Especially since, although the researchers are focusing on coronavirus for now, the solution is eventually to be used for vaccinations for other diseases as well: – The low cost of the device will ensure a quick return to work and management of subsequent waves of Covid-19. In addition to the pandemic, our work can be expanded for use with other infectious diseases, because the nature of this platform allows for rapid adaptation, they add.

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