Innoture, a company specialising in transdermal treatment delivery systems, has received funding from the Welsh Government to initiate proof-of-concept research into the use of its microneedle skin patch for the self-administration of COVID-19 and other vaccines.
The research is being conducted at Innoture’s laboratories located in the Institute of Life Science (ILS2) at Swansea University in Wales. The patch will be tested to deliver a vaccine dose via the skin, as well as achieve a disposal process to enable at-home use.
Dr Michael Graz, chief scientific officer of Innoture, said: “In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, vaccine developers and manufacturers face a major challenge to rapidly develop and upscale their vaccination programmes as the demand for needles, glass vials plus other treatment delivery supplies, increases. Therefore, it is vital that alternative delivery options are considered by the UK – and international – health community.
“Our transdermal delivery system has the potential to improve patient experience and significantly reduce the burden on the NHS and other healthcare systems. The patch is painless and minimally invasive for patients to self-administer. At a time when self-isolation is necessary, the patch can be applied with ease in the home under guidance from a healthcare professional, reducing the need for people to attend a clinic. In addition, for healthcare professionals, it shortens consultation or appointment times and potentially removes the need for cold-chain storage.”
Ken Jones, chief executive officer of Innoture, said: “We are pleased to announce the launch of this research as it represents a significant milestone for our company, and further validation of our next-generation transdermal delivery system. We are actively seeking new partners from the global pharmaceutical industry, academia, and non-governmental organisations to collaborate with us on this study. We believe that our innovative technology will make a meaningful difference to improve patient and public health.”