Drug delivered: Vaccines (influenza, HPV, etc.)
Innovation: Low-dose, simplified vaccine delivery
Research organization: University of Queensland
When it comes to vaccines, simple and effective delivery has a very practical purpose: to get more drugs to more people.
And when researchers in Australia showed earlier this year that they had a working model of a vaccine patch with thousands of coated nanospikes, the industry listened. Merck ($MRK) presented the preclinical device with a three-year grant, as its lead engineer, Mark Kendall, pushes for human trials.
By dispensing with the needle and syringe developed all the way back in 1853, according to a Reuters report, the nanopatch allows for a much smaller dose, zero refrigeration and a muscle delivery that reduces contact with immune cells. Plus, for many, pain does play a factor in whether they get vaccinated.