3D Printed Capsule Replaces Needle Injection

Julie Reindl
April 7th 2017

Everyone knows that short moment of anxiety when the nurse gets out the syringe and wants to inject it in your arm. Even though most of the times it's just a matter of seconds and barley no pain, it still is an annoying experience and for some people it could be a nightmare. To overcome this challenge, a team of researchers from UC Berkeley has developed MucoJet, a self administered, needle-free device.

Not tested on people yet, the technology avoids the pain of the needle, but also constructs immune cells in the mouth of the user. The mouth is the part of the body in which infections are likely to enter the body. By intaking the MucoJet oraly and pressing it against the inside of the cheek, a high pressure stream of vaccination is released. By doing so the thick mucosal layer in the mouth is targeted, in which a lot of immune cells sit.

This new technology makes the ingestion so easier that the help of a nurse is not necessary, this aspect could be very useful for people in remote areas. It is very small, 15 to 17 millimeters in size, and easy to produce thanks to its 3D printed design. By pressing the pill together the outer membrane dissolves and kicks off a series of chemical reactions. In this moment the pill size vaccinations is still at animal testing stage and might become available in the next decade.

With every new day, unseen techiniques and discoveries are made. We already know a lot about how the human body works and with every technological development we are increasingly able to self-control our bodies in new ways. We get immune against diseases, we develop robotics that float in our blood, we grow new organs to replace the old ones. We do everything we can in order to become stronger, healthier and older. But with every new development, we also create a new standard that we can’t undo once applied.

Source: BerkeleyNews. Image: Medicalxpress

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Siri Beerends: I really embrace the idea that viruses can teach us a lesson in modesty. It is necessary that our position as the dominant species on the planet is being challenged. I also agree that it is a mistake to think that we are becoming Gods. But unfortunately, this is actually what is happening now. Corona doesn’t teach us to be modest, it teaches us how we can -as quickly as possible- go back to business as usual: saving our capitalistic economy.

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