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Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2012;2012:6572-5. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2012.6347500.

Titanium-based, fenestrated, in-plane microneedles for passive ocular drug delivery.

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  • 1Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521, USA. okhandan@engr.ucr.edu


Drug delivery to the eye remains a key challenge, due to limitations inherent to prevailing delivery techniques. For example, while topical delivery offers simplicity and safety, its efficacy is often limited by poor bioavailability, due to natural transport barriers and clearance mechanisms. Similarly, while intravitreal injections performed across the ocular tunic provide means for circumventing such limitations, non-negligible potential for retinal detachment and other complications adversely affects safety. Herein, we discuss our initial efforts to address these limitations through development of titanium-based microneedles (MNs) which seek to provide a safer, simpler, and more efficacious means of ocular drug delivery. Devices with in-plane geometry and through-thickness fenestrations that serve as drug reservoirs for passive delivery via diffusive transport from fast-dissolving coatings are demonstrated. Details regarding device design, fabrication, and mechanical testing are presented, as are results from preliminary coating characterization and insertion testing in ex vivo rabbit cornea.

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