HealthDay News — A smart exendin-4 (Ex4) delivery device is a promising therapeutic option for type 2 diabetes that can provide safe, long-term, and on-demand Ex4 therapy, according to a study published online in Nature Communications.

Noting that delivery of therapeutic peptides for diabetes therapy is compromised by short half-lives of drugs, Wei Chen, PhD, from Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center in Guangzhou, China, and colleagues examined the role of a smart Ex4 delivery device based on microneedle (MN)-array patches integrated with dual mineralized particles that separately contain Ex4 and glucose oxidase (GOx) for diabetes therapy.

The researchers found that as a result of the differential response to the microenvironment induced by biological stimuli, the dual mineralized particle-based system can specifically release Ex4 while immobilizing GOx. Thereby the system allows glucose-responsive and closed-loop release to significantly improve the therapeutic performance of Ex4.

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The mechanical strength of alginate-based MN can be enhanced by integration of mineralized particles by crosslinking to facilitate skin penetration, supporting transdermal administration that is painless and noninvasive.

“We believe this smart glucose-responsive Ex4 delivery holds great promise for type 2 diabetes therapy by providing safe, long-term, and on-demand Ex4 therapy,” the authors write.

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Chen W, Tian R, Xu C, et al. Microneedle-array patches loaded with dual mineralized protein/peptide particles for type 2 diabetes therapy. Nat Commun. 2017; 8(1):1777.