A self-orienting millimeter-scale applicator (SOMA) for oral delivery of insulin and other biologics
8 Comments


Diabetes mellitus affects over 30
million Americans and 415 million people worldwide individuals with diabetes
either do not generate sufficient insulin are unable to use insulin
properly or experience both issues diabetes results in high blood sugar
levels which in turn can lead to serious complications including kidney, eye and
heart disease along with many other ailments for many people with diabetes
injecting insulin multiple times per day is the only way to control blood glucose
levels. Daily injections can be challenging for people, injections can
cause discomforts they draw attention, formulations require
refrigeration and they generate biohazardous needle waste. These
challenges can result in lower patient compliance which in turn results in
worse health outcomes. Over the past 100 years physicians and scientists have
searched for a method to deliver insulin using an oral capsule. However the walls
of the gastrointestinal tract to prevent the uptake of large molecules such as
insulin a team of scientists from MIT Harvard, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and
Novo Nordisk have developed a breakthrough capsule technology which
overcomes this barrier after a patient ingests the capsule it autonomously
inserts insulin into the top layers of stomach tissue. Inspired by the unique
shape of leopard tortoises which allow them to self right from any orientation
the team designed a novel system with the ability to consistently orient and
release the drug into the tissue wall the self orienting millimeter scale
actuator known as S.O.M.A. consistently delivered insulin with an efficiency
comparable to injection in our preclinical evaluation.
Both the tortoiseshell and the S.O.M.A. possess upper portions with pointed tops
and lower portions with level bottoms the high curvature body allows the
device to reorient itself utilizing gravity alone. The flat base ensures that
the S.O.M.A. does not tip over when moved by stomach contractions the stomach walls
muscular tissue acts as a natural barrier and prevents the risk of
perforation during drug insertion. After delivering the drug the capsule passes
safely through the body a dissolvable timing mechanism ensures reproducible
insulin delivery to the stomach wall rather than esophagus or small intestine.
Insulin uptake begins within a few minutes after ingestion and continues
throughout the day. In a large animal model insulin delivered orally using the
soma provided equivalent drug exposure compared to the same formulation
injected under the skin the scientists hope that this new capsule technology
will eventually allow patients to take a multitude of drugs including insulin
orally.

8 thoughts on “A self-orienting millimeter-scale applicator (SOMA) for oral delivery of insulin and other biologics

  1. I loved the graphics in this video; wonder what challenges the developing team has to face now with this applicator? Cost?

  2. Nice work, but what's exactly novel here? I remember someone from MIT presented the actuation mechanism in a conference in 2015 or 2016 (don't recall the name but he was working on artificial muscles). The idea itself is published in PNAS by one of my friends.

  3. This is a good tech, don't give this to psychiatrists, because in other countries they keep LGBT on drugs meant to effect other people, not sure if those people need those drugs either…

  4. where can we buy this product, from which country it`s originally generated? and if there is any contacts or email you can provide i will be very thankful

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