Researchers in the UK have developed a patch that delivers the drug ibuprofen to the injury site over a 24 hour period. It is believed that the adhesive patch will also pave the way for safe transdermal delivery of other drugs.
The secret lies in the patch’s adhesive, which is laden with up to 30% ibuprofen and solves the dosing problems associated with gel and cream formulations in which it is difficult to know just how much ibuprofen has been absorbed. The polymer-based adhesive, developed by Bostik for bio-adhesives company Medherant, allows for secure adhesion to skin, releases the active ingredient at a consistent rate, and peels off easily and comfortably after use.
The patches are expected to be released within the next three years, and Medherant is working with pharmaceutical companies to determine additional uses, such as slow-release dosing with opiates, for the new drug delivery system. Health supplements companies are also expressing an interest in the technology as a means of slowly releasing vitamins and minerals for transdermal absorption.