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Novel Method Involving Microneedles May Treat Peanut Allergies

Apr, 2022

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A new study found that a five minute dose of peanut protein every week through skin delivered by new microneedle technology is more efficient than using skin patch to administer the same protein

Peanut allergies can turn into life-threatening anaphylaxis. Such allergies could be eliminated with the use of some approaches involving use of skin patch and oral ingestion of encapsulated medication, however now, a team of scientists from the University of Michigan developed a new quick and more efficient approach to treat peanut allergies. The team found that a five minute dose of peanut protein each week through the skin delivered using new microneedle technology in mice with peanut allergy, was more efficient than delivering the dose through a skin patch.

To find a rapid and more reliable alternative the scientists now developed a microneedle patch technology approach. These patches join an array of small needles filled with medication on the underside. This pierces the outer layer of skin when the patch is pressed the body of patient. This procedure is painless as reported by the team, as the needles do not reach the nerves.  Moreover, as the microneedles further dissolve, the medication is released into the interstitial fluid in the skin cells. Then, the medication slowly enters into the bloodstream. In this new study, the team used powdered peanuts instead of medication, and applied a coating of this powder to microneedles on skin patches and then each patch was put on skin of mice with peanut allergy for five minutes once every week.

After five weeks, the team found that the animals developed more tolerance to peanut than other group of mice with peanut allergy that received other treatment. The other group developed same tolerance level in two months of therapy and required needed a 10 times higher amount of peanut protein dose compared to the one delivered through microneedles.

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