MIT researchers created a gelatin-coated capsule that carries three weeks’ worth of a contraceptive drug. The tablet can release, once reaching the stomach, a star-shaped delivery system with six folded arms, and those arms can expand, lodged inside the abdomen, and slowly release their payload, according to the examine.
The delivery system is manufactured from polymers called polyurethane, which might resist gastric acid fluids. Scientists loaded contraceptive drug levonorgestrel into its six arms and managed the rate at which it’s launched by changing the concentration of the polymers that mix with the drug.
Exams in pigs showed that this type of drug release could obtain the same focus of the drug in the bloodstream as taking an everyday dose and maintained the drug levels for up to four weeks, in line with the research. To be used in humans, the capsule can be designed to break down after three or four weeks and exit the body via the digestive tract.
The researchers are working on a number of possible methods to push the arms to split. Giovanni Traverso, a mechanical engineering assistant professor at MIT, stated the human checks could be possible within three to five years.
“We intend to alter people’s experience with taking drugs by making it simpler, with more infrequent doses in the first once-a-month, orally delivered drug system,” stated Traverso.