Implants to be safeguarded from immune attack by crystallised drugs

Implants to be safeguarded from immune attack by crystallised drugs

The immune system’s foreign body response (FBR) is likely to affect implantable medical devices that interact with the human body intimately. Resultantly, this causes scarring around the implants, which decreases their instrumentality over time. In order to avert any sort of serious localised immune response or reaction, the scientist at MIT have created a way to plant crystallized immunosuppressant drugs into implantable devices.

According to Shady Farah, an MIT and Boston Children’s Hospital postdoc and co-first author of the study appearing in Nature Materials, they created a drug formulation, which is crystallised in nature that can aim at the primary agents involved in rejecting the implant, subduing them locally and enabling the device to operate for more than a year.

In order to prove the concept, the team used their drug crystals to safeguard enclosed islet cells that are currently being researched as a medical treatment choice for type 1 diabetes. These were planted in monkeys and rodents for six months and 1.3 years respectively.

The researchers were able to densely concentrate the immunosuppressant upon crystallising it, which made the entire package smaller and practically possible to use. As crystals take time to liquefy, it enables the approach to function for months at a time. The researchers were in the position to control and monitor how long the mechanism will work for by linking the size and shape of the crystals.

Farah also added that they showcased that the drugs released at a slow speed and in a fashion that was nicely controlled. They took the crystals and used them in various kinds of devices allowing them to be protected for long durations. This would ensure that the device keeps functioning normally.

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