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A patch against melanoma
Treatments against black skin cancer (malignant melanoma) often involve stressful procedures such as radiation or chemotherapy to counteract the aggressive and recurring nature of melanoma cells. These treatments can affect the entire body. A research team has now developed a gentler treatment method in which the cancer is fought with the help of ultra-modern plasters.
Researchers at Purdue University in the US showed that skin cancer can be treated with special plasters. The patch contains active ingredients that are injected into the skin over a longer period of time using microscopic needles. All components of the patch are designed to degrade over time. The study results were recently published in the specialist journal "ACS Nano".
Patch opens gentle skin cancer therapy
The new patch is intended to offer skin cancer sufferers a more pleasant and less stressful therapy than conventional methods. "We have developed a new type of portable plaster with fully miniaturized needles that enables the skin to deliver an unobtrusive drug to treat skin cancer," says biomedical scientist Chi Hwan Lee from the research team.
How does the new patch work?
What is unique about the new plaster is that it completely dissolves in the course of the treatment. When the patch is stuck on, tiny silicon nanoneedles are injected into the skin and remain there. While the surface of the plaster dissolves after a short time, the silicon needles only degrade within several months and gradually release active substances against skin cancer.
Does the treatment cause pain?
"The uniqueness of our technology results from the fact that we used extremely small but durable silicon nano-needles with sharpened, angular tips that can penetrate the skin easily and painlessly," says Lee. This enables long-term and gentle administration of cancer therapeutic agents.
The research team is currently looking for partners to manufacture and market the patches so that they can be used to treat cancer. (vb)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
Graduate editor (FH) Volker Blasek
- Hyungjun Kim, Heung Soo Lee, Yale Jeon, u.a .: Bioresorbable, Miniaturized Porous Silicon Needles on a Flexible Water-Soluble Backing for Unobtrusive, Sustained Delivery of Chemotherapy; in: ACS Nano, 2020, pubs.acs.org