A microneedle patch inspired by the fangs of venomous snakes is more efficient and easier to use than current versions.
Micropatches are an effective and painless way to deliver medication, but their cargo of drugs is typically stored in freeze-dried form—a complex process that also decreases the medicine’s effectiveness.
As an alternative, an international team of researchers designed a patch able to store and deliver medication in liquid form. The microneedles of the patch were inspired by the fangs of venomous snakes, which have grooves etched in their sides that allow venom to flow quickly to their prey. The liquid medication can be dispensed by gently pressing the back of the patch, triggering a capillary action that draws the medicine through the needles and into the body in less than fifteen seconds.