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Nanopatch breakthrough could help rich and poor

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Postby rath » Fri Apr 23, 2010 12:28 pm

Times of India
Thursday, April 22

In what would make childhood immunisation easier and pain-free, Australian scientists have developed a patch -- the size of a postage stamp -- which they claim could be used to deliver cheap, needle-free vaccines.

A new study, led by the University of Queensland , has found that a vaccine delivered by 'Nanopatch' induces a similarly protective immune response as a vaccine delivered by needle and syringe, but uses 100 times less vaccine.

According to the scientists, the patch could be used in developing countries where clean needles and refrigeration are scarce. "The Nanopatch targeted specific antigen presenting cells found in a narrow layer just beneath the skin surface and as a result we used less than one hundredth of dose used by a needle while stimulating a comparable immune response.

"Our result is ten times better than the best results achieved by other delivery methods and does not require the use of other immune stimulants, called adjuvants, or multiple vaccinations.

"Because the Nanopatch requires neither a trained practitioner to administer it nor refrigeration, it has enormous potential cheaply deliver vaccines in developing nations," lead scientist Professor Mark Kendall said.
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