3D printed microneedle patches using stereolithography (SLA) for intradermal insulin delivery

Sophia N. Economidou, Cristiane Patricia Pissinato Pere, Andrew Reid, Md. Jasim Uddin, James F.C. Windmill, Dimitrios Lamprou, Dennis Douroumis

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3D printed microneedle arrays were fabricated using a biocompatible resin through stereolithography (SLA) for transdermal insulin delivery. Microneedles were built by polymerising consecutive layers of a photopolymer resin. Thin layers of insulin and sugar alcohol or disaccharide carriers were formed on the needle surface by inkjet printing. The optimization of the printing process resulted in superior skin penetration capacity of the 3D printed microneedles compared to metal arrays with minimum applied forces varying within the range of 2 to 5N. Micro–CT analysis showed strong adhesion of the coated films on the microneedle surface even after penetration to the skin. In vivo animal trials revealed fast insulin action with excellent hypoglycaemia control and lower glucose levels achieved within 60 min, combined with steady state plasma glucose over 4 h compared to subcutaneous injections.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering C: Materials for Biological Applications
Early online date22 Apr 2019
Publication statusEarly online date - 22 Apr 2019


  • 3D printing
  • microneedles
  • inkjet coating
  • insulin
  • μCT
  • drug release
  • Pharmaceutics


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