Drug Delivery Devices


Drug delivery devices are engineered technologies for the focused supply and/or managed release of therapeutic agents. Such devices are used as a part of several medical treatments. Silicone, ethylene vinyl acetate, polyurethane, acrylate hydrogels, and other biodegradable substances are the materials commonly used to manufacture drug delivery systems.

Drug Devices
Drug Devices

Drugs, for long, have been used to enhance health and extend lifespans. The practice of drug supply has modified dramatically up to now few decades, and even better modifications are anticipated within the near future.

Biomedical engineers have contributed considerably to our understanding of the physiological limitations to efficient drug delivery, such as transport within the circulatory system and drug movement via cells and tissues. They’ve also contributed to the development several new modes of drug delivery which have entered medical practice.

But, with all of this progress, many drugs, even those found utilizing the most advanced molecular biology methods, have unacceptable side effects as a result of drug interacting with healthy tissues that aren’t the target of the drug.

Side effects restrict our capability to design optimum medicines for a lot of illnesses such as most cancers, neurodegenerative diseases, and infectious ailments. Drug delivery devices control the speed at which a drug is released and the placement in the body the place it’s released. Some systems can control both.

Delivery Devices in Present Medical Practices:

Usage of Drug
Usage of Drug

Clinicians traditionally have tried to direct their interventions to areas of the body in danger or affected by illness. Relying on the medication, the way in which it’s delivered, and the way our bodies respond, side effects sometimes happen. These adverse effects can fluctuate vastly from individual to individual in type and severity.

For instance, an oral drug for seasonal allergies could trigger undesirable drowsiness or an upset stomach.

Supervising drugs locally rather than systemically (affecting the entire body) is a standard approach to lower side effects and drug toxicity while expanding a remedy’s influence. A topical (used on the skin) antibacterial ointment for a localized infection or a cortisone injection of a painful joint can keep away from a few of the systemic side effects of those medicines. There are different methods to attain targeted drug delivery. However, some medicines can solely be given systemically.

Market Growth:

The worldwide pharmaceutical drug delivery market is projected to achieve USD 1,694.7 billion till 2023 from USD 1,244.4 billion during the year 2018, at a CAGR of 6.4% in the course of the forecast interval. Growth in this market is principally pushed by the rising prevalence of chronic illnesses, growth in the biologics market, and technological developments and recent product launches.

Non-adherence to prescribed drugs is a major issue for elevated illness burden and healthcare prices. The effect of non-adherence can include decrease product consumption, suboptimal patient outcomes, and lowered drug sale. Connected drug delivery systems are used for enhancing patient adherence towards prescribed medicines by physicians.

Market Growth
Market Growth

These products assist physicians in monitoring patient compliance to prescribed remedy and modify patient treatment accordingly. The increasing number of initiatives spreading awareness relating to the complexities attributable to over or under dosing of medicines are anticipated to advertise the adoption of connected drug delivery devices.

Thus, growing awareness relating to the adversarial results of non-adherence is prone to increase the market progress. Consciousness about some great benefits of linked methods over typical methods is further anticipated to fuel the product demand, thereby driving the market over the subsequent few years.

Regional Data:

North America regarded for the largest revenue share of 2017 and is anticipated to steer the market over the forecast interval. The area can be anticipated to witness the fastest progress owing to the quick adoption of the latest technologies and units, excessive per capita healthcare expenditure, and rising awareness relating to the adversarial results of non-adherence to medication.

Regional Data
Regional Data

Europe is estimated to be the second-fastest-rising marketplace for linked drug delivery devices. Elevated incidence of chronic illnesses and the presence of a large target population base are the elements augmenting product demand within the area. In areas, corresponding to Asia Pacific (excluding Australia and Japan), Latin America, and MEA, the need for linked drug delivery devices is anticipated to stay low in coming years.

Excessive value of those devices is anticipated to be one of the crucial factors in impeding market progress in these areas. Nevertheless, with the growing variety of market entrants, the product costs are anticipated to lower over time. It will assist the market growth in such nations.

Industry Key Players:

Some of the leading players in the drug delivery devices market are as follows:

  •  Johnson & Johnson, Inc. (US)

    Industry Key Players
    Industry Key Players
  •  F. Hoffman-La Roche (Switzerland)
  •  Merck & Co., Inc. (US)
  •  Bayer AG (Germany)
  •  Pfizer, Inc. (US)
  •  Novartis AG (Switzerland)
  •  3M Company (US)
  •  Becton, Dickinson and Company (US)
  •  GlaxoSmithKline plc, (UK)
  •  Sanofi (France)
  •  Antares Pharma, Inc. (US)

Types Of Drug Delivery Devices:

1) Polymeric Systems-

A substantial load of research has been carried out into the usage of polymers to develop a technique of controlling the supply of drugs to the human body. Inside this class, there are four sub-divisions, categorized by the mechanism which controls the rate of drug release.

  •  Diffusion Control:
    In lots of circumstances rate of release of a drug from a tool is managed by the rate at which the drug disseminates through a polymer. This class is further subdivided based on how the drug is

    Chemical Control
    Chemical Control

    held within the polymer. If a drug is retained in a reservoir, it is named a reservoir device. Nevertheless, when drug is dispersed throughout the polymer, it is called a matrix device.

  •  Chemical Control:
    Polymeric drug delivery devices have been developed by which the polymer is vulnerable to breakdown by agents present within the body (normally water, or enzymes). Two situations exist, one during which drug is held inside a biodegradable polymer, and ones in which the drug is chemically linked to a polymer by a bond that’s biodegradable. The latter is referred to as pendant chain systems, and the polymer is commonly soluble.
  •  Solvent Control:
    Another mechanism for controlling the discharge of drug from a tool entails the usage of a solvent, which in the case of the human body is water. In a single class, the solvent diffuses into the machine and causes swelling, i.e., swelling managed. In another case, the device incorporates an excessive focus of salt to which the solvent is attracted by osmosis via a semi-permeable membrane, and the ensuing influx of water is harnessed to expel a solution of the drug out of an orifice within the system.
  •  Externally Activated or Modulated:
    The final class of polymeric machine is being developed in an effort to give some type of control to the release that may be triggered by exterior means. Two examples include the usage of magnetic beads, implanted in a polymer together with the drug, and activated by subjecting the beads to an exterior, oscillating magnetic field, and the usage of externally utilized ultrasound energy to increase drug release from polymer encapsulated drug.

2) Drug Modification or Protection-

An alternate strategy is to modify the drug in order that it’s protected from the environment till it’s needed, or the environment is protected from it, (as can be the case for medication which can be toxic to certain organs).

  •  Produg Formation:
    Drug Modification
    Drug Modification

    A prodrug is an inactive type of a drug which is transformed into the active type in the body. A classic instance of a prodrug is the drug L-dopa, used in the management of Parkinson’s disease.

  •  Conjugation to a Homing Molecule:
    A lot of attraction has been generated by the prospect of creating a magic bullet that can house in on the illness area and deliver the drug. That is notably enticing in the case of cancer medication, which is sometimes extremely poisonous to many regular cells within the body, in addition to the cancer cells. In this method, the drug could be made to keep away from areas in which it will trigger damage, at the same time delivering a large payload to the target web site.
  •  Liposomal Entrapment:
    It’s potential to form micro-vesicles that include a drug. These bilayered micro-vesicles, referred to as liposomes, are shaped spontaneously when phospholipids contact an aqueous environment. Phospholipids are naturally occurring amphipathic molecules (include both a hydrophilic and hydrophobic area). If they contact a solution of the drug, they’ll form a vesicle entrapping among the drug solution in the interior.

3) Pumps-


One can imagine that if the drug is in solution, it will be very handy to pump it into the body by way of a thin catheter. That is, actually, the strategy of choice in hospitals, and at present, there are sophisticated syringe pumps which can be found to be programmed to pump a drug solution by means of an intravenous line. This, nonetheless, requires that the recipient is under continuous supervision by skilled personnel, and likewise that the protective barricade of the skin is broken to permit insertion of a needle. Which means the intravenous injection of a drug is a costly proposition, which may result in issues such as infections.

4) Modification of The Site of Delivery-

It is usually attainable to manage how the body takes a drug up by altering both the properties or the placement of the site of administration.

  •  Use of Enhancers:
    Site of Delivery
    Site of Delivery

    Many drugs can’t pass by way of barriers such as the skin, or the nasal mucosa, so one strategy to deliver them by these routes is to change the skin permeable both by means of chemical compounds often called enhancers, or by physical strategies such as the usage of electrical current (iontophoresis) or ultrasound (sonophoresis).

  •  Shift in Absorption Zone:
    It is usually possible to vary the positioning of supply by defending the drug so that it will go to the primary site and arrive at a site where it’s more likely to be absorbed. That is the case with medication which can be absorbed by way of the intestine, however not all through the abdomen, where they arrive from the mouth. If the drug is destroyed within the abdomen, it must be protected, and polymeric coatings have been developed that stay intact in acid situations however break down within the alkaline surroundings to the upper intestine. These coatings are often known as enteric coatings.


1. How do drugs affect the brain?

Drugs interfere with the way neurons send, receive, and process signals via neurotransmitters. Some drugs, such as marijuana and heroin, can activate neurons because their chemical structure mimics that of a natural neurotransmitter in the body.

2. What is advanced drug delivery system?

The term “drug delivery systems” refers to the technology utilized to present the drug to the desired body site for drug release and absorption. The first drug delivery system developed was the syringe, invented in 1855, used to deliver medicine by injection.

3. Which pharmaceutical company is the largest in the world?

The world’s largest pharmaceutical company is multinational pharma giant Pfizer, headquartered in Connecticut, USA.

4. What is controlled drug delivery system?

Controlled drug delivery is one which delivers the drug at a predetermined rate, for locally or systemically, for a specified period of time. Continuous oral delivery of drugs at predictable and reproducible kinetics for predetermined period throughout the course of GIT.

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