3D printed microneedles for insulin skin delivery

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In this study, polymeric microneedle patches were fabricated by stereolithography, a 3D printing technique, for the transdermal delivery of insulin. A biocompatible resin was photopolymerized to build pyramid and cone microneedle designs followed by inkjet print coating of insulin formulations. Trehalose, mannitol and xylitol were used as drug carriers with the aim to preserve insulin integrity and stability but also to facilitate rapid release rates. Circular dichroism and Raman analysis demonstrated that all carriers maintained the native form of insulin, with xylitol presenting the best performance. Franz cell release studies were used for in vitro determination of insulin release rates in porcine skin. Insulin was released rapidly within 30min irrespectively of the microneedle design. 3D printing was proved an effective technology for the fabrication of biocompatible and scalable microneedle patches.

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