Researchers at Purdue University, Indiana, US, have developed a miniature pump to be used with microneedle drug-delivery patches, which will improve the delivery of medication into the skin.

Microneedle drug-delivery patches contain arrays of tiny microneedles. To deliver the drug painlessly into the skin, the patches require a pump that can push the drug through the narrow needles.

The researchers developed a miniature pump, which is activated by a finger’s touch. The pump, which requires no battery, is activated whereby a liquid is vapourised by heat from fingers, creating enough pressure to force the drug through the microneedles within 20 to 30 seconds.

The pump enables microneedle drug delivery patches to deliver a wide range of medication into the skin.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation.