Microneedle-Iontophoresis Combinations for Enhanced Transdermal Drug Delivery

Ryan F. Donnelly, Martin J. Garland, Ahlam Zaid Alkilani

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


It has recently been proposed that the combination of skin barrier impairment using microneedles (MNs) coupled with iontophoresis (ITP) may broaden the range of drugs suitable for transdermal delivery as well as enabling the rate of delivery to be achieved with precise electronic control. However, few reports exist on the combination of ITP with in situ drug-loaded polymeric MN delivery systems. Our in vitro permeation studies revealed that MN enhances transdermal drug delivery. The combination of dissolving MN and ITP did not further enhance the extent of delivery of the low molecular weight drug ibuprofen sodium after short application periods. However, the extent of peptide/protein delivery was significantly enhanced when ITP was used in combination with hydrogel-forming MN arrays. As such, hydrogel-forming MN arrays show promise for the electrically controlled transdermal delivery of biomacromolecules in a simple, one-step approach, though further technical developments will be necessary before patient benefit is realized.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDrug Delivery Systems
EditorsKewal K. Jain
PublisherHumana Press
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print) 978-1493903627
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology


  • Administration, Cutaneous
  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate
  • Hydrogels
  • Ibuprofen
  • Insulin
  • Iontophoresis
  • Microinjections
  • Needles
  • Rats
  • Serum Albumin, Bovine
  • Skin
  • Swine


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