Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Body heat, fermentation drive new drug-delivery 'micropump'

12.09.2012
Researchers have created a new type of miniature pump activated by body heat that could be used in drug-delivery patches powered by fermentation.

The micropump contains Baker's yeast and sugar in a small chamber. When water is added and the patch is placed on the skin, the body heat and the added water causes the yeast and sugar to ferment, generating a small amount of carbon dioxide gas. The gas pushes against a membrane and has been shown to continually pump for several hours, said Babak Ziaie, a Purdue University professor of electrical and computer engineering and biomedical engineering.

Such miniature pumps could make possible drug-delivery patches that use arrays of "microneedles" to deliver a wider range of medications than now possible with conventional patches. Unlike many other micropumps under development or in commercial use, the new technology requires no batteries, said Ziaie, who is working with doctoral student Manuel Ochoa.

"This just needs yeast, sugar, water and your own body heat," Ziaie said.

The robustness of yeast allows for long shelf life, and the design is ideal for mass production, Ochoa said.

"It would be easy to fabricate because it's just a few layers of polymers sandwiched together and bonded," he said.

Findings were detailed in a research paper published online in August in the journal Lab on a Chip. The paper was written by Ochoa and Ziaie, and the research is based at Purdue's Birck Nanotechnology Center in the university's Discovery Park.

The "the microorganism-powered thermopneumatic pump" is made out of layers of a rubberlike polymer, called polydimethylsiloxane, which is used commercially for diaphragms in pumps. The prototype is 1.5 centimeters long.
Current "transdermal" patches are limited to delivering drugs that, like nicotine, are made of small hydrophobic molecules that can be absorbed through the skin, Ziaie said.

"Many drugs, including those for treating cancer and autoimmune disorders cannot be delivered with patches because they are large molecules that won't go through the skin," he said. "Although transdermal drug delivery via microneedle arrays has long been identified as a viable and promising method for delivering large hydrophilic molecules across the skin, a suitable pump has been hard to develop."

Patches that used arrays of tiny microneedles could deliver a multitude of drugs, and the needles do not cause pain because they barely penetrate the skin, Ziaie said. The patches require a pump to push the drugs through the narrow needles, which have a diameter of about 20 microns, or roughly one-fourth as wide as a human hair.

Most pumps proposed for drug-delivery applications rely on an on-board power source, which is bulky, costly and requires complex power-management circuits to conserve battery life.

"Our approach is much more simple," Ziaie said. "It could be a disposable transdermal pump. You just inject water into the patch and place it on your skin. After it's used up, you would throw it away."

Researchers have filed an application for a provisional patent on the device.
Writer: Emil Venere, 765-494-4709, venere@purdue.edu

Source: Babak Ziaie, 765-494-0725, bziaie@purdue.edu

Note to Journalists: A copy of the research paper is available by contacting Emil Venere, 765-494-4709, venere@purdue.edu

ABSTRACT

A fermentation-powered thermopneumatic pump for biomedical applications

Manuel Ochoa ac and Babak Ziaie *abc

a School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University

b Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering

c Birck Nanotechnology Center

We present a microorganism-powered thermopneumatic pump that utilizes temperature-dependent slow-kinetics gas (carbon dioxide) generating fermentation of yeast as a pressure source. The pump consists of stacked layers of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and a silicon substrate that form a drug reservoir, and a yeast-solution-filled working chamber. The pump operates by the displacement of a drug due to the generation of gas produced via yeast fermentation carried out at skin temperatures. The robustness of yeast allows for long shelf life under extreme environmental conditions (50 °C, >250 MPa, 5-8% humidity). The generation of carbon dioxide is a linear function of time for a given temperature, thus allowing for a controlled volume displacement. A polymeric prototype (dimensions 15 mm x 15 mm x 10 mm) with a slow flow rate of

Emil Venere | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.purdue.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Millions through license revenues
27.04.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>