Drug Delivery Insights: Injectable Drugs

A roundup of the latest developments for drug delivery of parenteral drugs.
Sep 05, 2012
Volume 8, Issue 9

Innovation in parenteral drug delivery often comes from the device itself to enable ease of use and greater patient compliance. Several recent developments in parenteral drug delivery involve thin-wall needles for prefilled syringes, an auto-injector with audio and visual functionality, and an improved self-injection system.

Prefilled syringes
In late July, BD Medical, a segment of BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), launched the BD Hyflow needle, a 27-gauge thin-wall needle designed for use with BD’s prefillable syringe systems. The optimized inner diameter of the BD Hyflow needle enables injection of highly viscous drug formulations without the use of a larger needle that could be more painful for the patient, according to the company.

The BD Hyflow needle increases flow to facilitate use with auto-injectors and infusors. The new needle technology also reduces the pressure required to inject, a crucial attribute for patients with dexterity limitations and facilitates patient use and compliance. The needle technology represents an alternative to larger needle-gauge systems. BD says the product is one of several the company plans to launch over the next 18 months to enhance the performance of prefilled-syringe systems.

Auto-injector with audio and visual functionality Sanofi reported last month of FDA approval for its Auvi-Q (epinephrine injection, USP) for the emergency treatment of allergic reactions in people at risk for or having a history of anaphylaxis. Auvi-Q is a compact epinephrine auto-injector with audio and visual cues that guide patients and caregivers step- by-step through the injection process. Sanofi US licensed the North American commercialization rights to Auvi-Q from Intelliject, which has retained commercialization rights for the rest of the world.

Auvi-Q provides users with audible and visual cues, including a five-second-injection countdown and an alert light to signal when the injection is complete. In addition to being an auto-injector, Auvi-Q features an automatic retractable needle mechanism to help prevent accidental needle sticks. During a reaction, Auvi-Q talks the user through each step of the injection process. If the patient or caregiver needs more time, it repeats the step-by-step directions. Alternatively, a patient or caregiver can move at his/her own pace by following the written instructions printed on the device, according to Sanofi.

The product is available in two different dosages. Auvi-Q 0.3 mg delivers a 0.3-mg epinephrine injection, and Auvi-Q 0.15 mg delivers a 0.15-mg epinephrine. Each Auvi-Q pack contains two devices containing one dose of epinephrine each and a non-active training device.

Self-injection systems
In other news, West will collaborate with Janssen Biotech on the development and manufacturing of a self-injection product. The technology, developed by Janssen Biotech, has been specifically designed to meet the needs of patients by facilitating easier self-injection of pharmaceutical and biologic drug products. West will market the new injection technology under the name SelfDose. West will be responsible for codeveloping and handling the commercial scale-up and manufacture of the product and will have the ability to offer the SelfDose injection technology as part of its portfolio of self-injection technology platforms. The SelfDose injection technology complements West's ConfiDose and SmartDose injection technologies.

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