An Advanced Approach of NFID - Nanopatch Technology

Review Article

Austin J Nanomed Nanotechnol. 2015; 3(1): 1039.

An Advanced Approach of NFID - Nanopatch Technology

Pallavi B, Thofeeq MD* and Venkat Reddy B.Ch*

Department of Biotechnology, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, India

*Corresponding authors: Thofeeq MD, Department of Biotechnology, Sri Indu Engineering College, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Hyderabad

Venkat Reddy B.Ch, Department of Biotechnology, Sri Indu Engineering College, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Hyderabad, India

Received: May 05, 2015; Accepted: August 05, 2015; Published: August 10, 2015


Needle-free injection systems are novel ways to introduce various medicines into patients without piercing the skin with a conventional needle. Needle-free technology offers the very obvious benefit of reducing patient concern about the use of needle. According to Food and drug administration [FDA]: A needle-less or needle free injection is a device used for the parenteral administration of a medicament is disclosed. They can take in the form of power sprays, edible products, inhalers, and skin patches. Needle-free systems are designed to solve these problems making them safer, less expensive, and more convenient. The purpose of current article is to enlighten the advantages and uses of drug delivery using Nanopatch technology. This technology is used to deliver drugs, vaccines, etc. Today, Nanopatch is a developing technology that promises to make the administration of medicine more efficient and there is the obvious attraction that being needle-free, a patch is painless, and does not run the risk of needle-stick injuries, can use easily of its small size, temperature stability also introduces the option of distributing vaccines to parts of the world where “cold chain” infrastructure is unreliable or non-existent.

Keywords: Nanopatch Technology; NFID; Needle-free


Approximately 95% of people who die from infectious diseases reside in resource-limited areas [1]. Now a days we can treat or prevent many diseases using different vaccines available in market. Effective and widespread distribution of vaccines in these areas is limited by breakdowns in refrigeration (‘cold chain’), lack of trained personnel for safe vaccine administration, needlestick injuries resulting from cross-contamination or needle sharing, and the phobia associated with needle pain. Indeed, even in developed countries, so many people have needle phobia because of that people avoid taking medicaments, studies shows that in developing countries almost 10% of people of total population are afraid of injections and needles. While development of new and improved vaccines will continue into the future for a range of diseases, the only way to meet the resource challenges worldwide is to engineer better ways of administering vaccines in a simple and effective way to more people than is currently the case [2].

The hypodermic syringes were first developed by French surgeon, Charles Gabriel pravaz, in 1853s and since then, intramuscular injection of vaccines has been the most popular delivery method due to its ease of administration [3]. However, this technology has several disadvantages. Firstly, muscle contains relatively few APCs, which are important in generating protective immune responses. Secondly, the stability of vaccine formulations is heavily dependent upon environmental factors such as temperature and humidity, with costs in maintaining the cold chain potentially sufficient to vaccinate a further 10 million children if refrigeration were not required [4].

Finally, needle-based vaccine delivery in low-resource regions requires qualified medical practitioners to reduce needlestick injuries, unsafe injections and biological waste exposure [5]. Clearly, there is a pressing need for new vaccine delivery tools that are needlefree, pain-free, simple and inexpensive to distribute and use, with improved efficacy or reduced dose per person, in order to vaccinate more people per less cost.

To overcome all these problems Needle-free injection devices (NFID) have been available for humans since the 1930s. According to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) needle-free injection is defined as the injection of medicinal products through the skin by pressure without penetrating the skin with a needle [ISO/ TC 84/WG 4 2004] [6]. Even though some people use needle syringe injections due to its less cost and lack of awareness about needle free injection systems. People are given injections to protect them from different infectious diseases. When a needle is inserted through the skin, the vaccine (or drug) it carries provides systemic immunity. This is because the vaccine gets into the bloodstream and provokes the body to create antibodies that are carried throughout the entire body. Nanopatch is the advanced Needle-free injection system, and novel way to introduce various medicines into patients without piercing the skin with a conventional needle [7].


A scientific study shows that, Over 13 million people die from infectious diseases every year [1]. Whilst public and private research initiatives continue to develop novel vaccines for many diseases [8], the issue of how best to formulate, package, distribute and administer these vaccines across the world remains a significant unsolved problem. Most vaccines have been delivered by the needle and syringe, however this technology has several important disadvantages including needlestick injuries, disease transmission through needle reuse [5], limited thermostability, the need for training/ expertise for administration, lack of targeting to immune rich regions of the body, and the issues of pain/phobia that result in avoidance of medical care in ~10% of the population. Micro Projection Arrays (MPAs) can overcome some of these challenges and have thus far shown promising results in terms of immunogenicity and protection both in preclinical and Phase 1 human trials. As described below, recently extended the field with an ultra-high density projection array- the Nanopatch – to deliver vaccine into the epidermis and dermis, the skin layers rich in antigen presenting cells (APCs). Key advantages of its design result in improved immune responses (with 100th of the dose required by the needle and syringe into muscle) and greatly improved thermostability in comparison to needle/ syringe delivery, enabling better suitability for applications in developing countries and broad applicability across a range of different vaccine types.

Skin as an Alter Native Target Organ for Vaccine Delivery

Structure of human skin

The skin is the largest organ in the human body and the first line of defence against most opportunistic pathogens. Skin is essential for successful administration of drugs through needle free injection systems as these drugs are administered underneath the skin [9]. It has a thickness of approximately 2000 – 3000 μm. In addition to serving as a mechanical barrier to pathogen entry, the skin is also a potent immune organ [10] (Figure 1).