Send to

Choose Destination
IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2005 May;52(5):909-15.

Hollow metal microneedles for insulin delivery to diabetic rats.

Author information

School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30332, USA.


The goal of this study was to design, fabricate, and test arrays of hollow microneedles for minimally invasive and continuous delivery of insulin in vivo. As a simple, robust fabrication method suitable for inexpensive mass production, we developed a modified-LIGA process to micromachine molds out of polyethylene terephthalate using an ultraviolet laser, coated those molds with nickel by electrodepostion onto a sputter-deposited seed layer, and released the resulting metal microneedle arrays by selectively etching the polymer mold. Mechanical testing showed that these microneedles were sufficiently strong to pierce living skin without breaking. Arrays containing 16 microneedles measuring 500 microm in length with a 75 microm tip diameter were then inserted into the skin of anesthetized, diabetic, hairless rats. Insulin delivery through microneedles caused blood glucose levels to drop steadily to 47% of pretreatment values over a 4-h insulin delivery period and were then approximately constant over a 4-h postdelivery monitoring period. Direct measurement of plasma insulin levels showed a peak value of 0.43 ng/ml. Together, these data suggest that microneedles can be fabricated and used for in vivo insulin delivery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society
Loading ...
Support Center