Oct, 2021 - By WMR
Researchers developed a biodegradable polymer patch with microneedles studded under it that delivers medications to oxygenate the tissue.
Chronic wounds, such as diabetic wounds, can be treated if the affected tissues are properly oxygenated. These wounds are challenging to treat as antibiotic-resistance biofilms form over the tissues that are affected. A newly developed biodegradable polymer microneedle patch by a team of scientists at Purdue University, Indiana, delivers antibiotics to the affected tissues. According to the research published in the journal ACS Applied Bio Materials in June 2021, the microneedle patch overcomes the physiochemical bacterial biofilm present in chronic and wounds that are difficult to heal, and it provides oxygen and medicines to the wounds together.
In a diabetic ulcer wound, biofilms formed by colonies of bacteria act as a shield. It restricts antibiotic medications from reaching affected tissues, which hinders the healing of the wound. The newly developed microneedles patch invades through this shield of biofilm and absorbs the fluid beneath it and dissolves. Due to this, antibiotic medications are directly delivered to the infected cells. In a conventional method to treat diabetic wounds, the bacterial biofilm is peeled off which is excruciating for patients and it takes out healthy tissues along with infected tissues. According to the team, the microneedles are painless as they are small and do not reach nerve endings in the wound. The microneedle patch was developed on ex vivo porcine wound models. The time taken for the microneedles to dissolve was less than five minutes. It delivered the antibiotics and soon after that the patch was removed.
Furthermore, when tested on a chronic wound on a pig skin, the microneedle patch successfully delivered calcium peroxide through biofilms, which provides oxygen to the infected tissues and helps the growth of new tissues. Now, the team plans human clinical trials of the microneedles patch.