Drugs sneak through the skin without patches

Some large molecules have been caught sneaking through the skin on their own, much to the surprise of a team of international researchers. The molecules, naturally occurring plant-derived products known as avicins, moved through the skin at a much higher rate than would be expected based on their size. Avicins are made up of sugars surrounding a fat-soluble core, and it seems to be the sugars that make the trip across the skin's barrier possible. Knowing about the structure of avicins could help scientists to create new transdermal delivery systems for larger biological molecules such as vaccines or insulin. The research was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Press release | Abstract

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