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Scientists are currently working on a patch that could replace the need for daily insulin injections by people with Type 1 diabetes. This patch is said to eventually be able to release small doses of insulin via the skin.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition where a person’s body is unable to control blood glucose levels because it’s unable to produce insulin. Most people who have it tend to do so from childhood, whereas people with Type 2 diabetes develop it later in life, mostly as a result of lifestyle reasons.
The diabetes treatment patch has undergone testing on 100 people in the US with insulin-dependent diabetes and the results look promising. A trial involving more than 500 patients is now being planned.
It is thought that the patch will be a far more convenient way for diabetics to control their insulin levels, as many feel the need to hide their condition from others, thereby not always testing their blood glucose levels when they should or getting their jabs.
Unlike conventional patch treatments, this patch is electronic and works by delivering small molecules of a medication via the skin with the help of sound waves. This is because insulin molecules are bigger than other treatments that can be delivered via the skin, such as contraception. The sound waves reach the skin and forces open sweat glands creating a route for the molecules to take. The electronic patch will be able to house different doses and transmit data to allow better control over blood glucose levels. It is also waterproof, meaning that it can be worn around the clock.
It is believed that it will be available in the UK within the next five years if all goes well during trails. For more information about the development of the treatment and the company behind it visit http://www.transdermalglobal.com/