Universiteit Leiden

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Research project

Dermal Vaccination By Soluble Microneedles

Microneedles are needle-like structures long enough to pierce the upper layer of the skin (stratum corneum), that is a major barrier to intradermal drug delivery. Microneedles are also short enough to reduce the stimulation of nerves in the dermis and thus evading the generation of the pain sensation.

Mara Leone

Soluble microneedles are a subgroup of microneedle types that completely dissolve within the skin. During this dissolving process the drug, stored in the needle matrix, is released into the skin. Soluble microneedles are made of a water-soluble, inert and safe material, such as hyaluronic acid. The microneedles will be used to vaccinate via the skin, which is a very immune competent organ that holds great potential for vaccine delivery. The minimally invasive and easy nature of the injections can reduce the risk of infections and alleviate the need for trained personnel. Furthermore, they eliminate all sharp waste as the needles dissolve during drug delivery.

The goals of this project are to improve the immunogenicity of vaccines through skin delivery, allowing for increased understanding of skin immunology and the development of pain free and safe vaccine delivery systems.

The project is done in close collaboration with the Institute for Translational Vaccinology (Intravacc) in Bilthoven.

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