A team of Korean researchers have developed a skin-attached diabetic patch that can measure blood sugar with a small amount of sweat without drawing blood and administer appropriate amounts of drugs by stages according to blood glucose levels.
The team led by Kim Dae-hyung, a professor of chemistry and biotechnology of the Nanoparticle Research Group under the management of director Hyun Taek-hwan, a professor of chemistry of Seoul National University (SNU) at SNU’s Institute of Basic Science and Research (IBS) announced on March 12 that the research team developed an integrated system consisting of a measurement patch that can measure blood sugar more accurately with less sweat than current diabetic patches and a drug delivery patch that delivers the appropriate amount of drug step by step
The research team created a smaller and more sensitive sugar sensor with gold with many tiny pores to allow for more accurate measurement of blood sugar with less sweat by taking into consideration the fact that it is irksome to sweat for blood sugar measurement.
This sugar sensor can measure blood sugar with about 1 ㎕ of sweat. This volume is less than a drop of water (2 to 5 μl) at the steam level from a humidifier.
They developed also a strip-type sensor that allows the user to easily measure only a single dose with the patch type that attaches the sensor to the skin.
The team explained that a skin-tied glucose sensor can measure blood glucose levels while moving such as taking exercise, and the strip-type glucose sensor can be easily used as a disposable product.
The researchers then developed a drug delivery patch that can deliver the appropriate amount of drug by stage according to the measured blood glucose levels based on two types of phase change nanoparticles. This drug delivery patch can regulate the amount of drug delivered according to blood glucose levels in six steps.
The researchers applied blood glucose measurement patches and drug delivery patches to experimental rats with type 2 diabetes and they succeeded in measuring blood glucose and controlling blood glucose levels by means of stepwise drug administration.
"We have improved current diabetes patches so that patients can use diabetes patches more easily and make them commercially viable." researcher Kim Dae-hyung said. “These diverse technologies applied to the sugar sensor and treatment can be widely used for the diagnosis and treatment of various disease models besides diabetes treatment.”
The research findings were published in the March 9 online edition of Science Advances, an international economic journal.