Wearable patch for improved melanoma treatment

New findings could help improve bone marrow and stem cell transplantation

Patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy suffer from toxicity and side effects of repeated treatments. Though less invasive topical chemotherapies have emerged as alternatives, they are a bit painful. In the case of melanoma ( skin cancer), these invasive therapies are both painful and are also hindered by rapidly dissolving behavior of polymers used in the treatments. Well, Purdue University innovators have now created a new wearable patch to provide improved treatment experience for melanoma patients.

Purdue assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering Chi Hwan Lee said that the wearable patch with fully miniaturized needles enables unobtrusive drug delivery through the skin for the management of melanoma. Lee also mentioned that the wearable patch was fully dissolvable by body fluids.

The patch is programmed in such a manner that it dissolves within one minute after the introduction of needles into the skin. The silicon needles will then dissolve into the tissues within a few months. Lee said the slow dissolution of silicon nanoneedles allowed for long lasting and sustainable delivery of cancer therapeutics. The the uniqueness of the wearable patch was its small and long lasting silicon nanoneedles, Lee said. These needles penetrated into the skin in a painless and minimally invasive manner. Moreover, the needles have nanoscale pores that provide a large drug loading capacity comparable to those using conventional microneedles.


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