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Microneedles Fabrication for Subcutaneous Fluid Sampling and Drug Delivery

Faraji-Rad, Zahra (2016)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Microneedle arrays have been proposed for drug delivery and point-of-care diagnostics to improve the quality of health care delivery systems. Unskilled and painless applications of microneedle patches for blood collection or drug delivery are two of the advantages of microneedle arrays over hypodermic needles. Microneedle designs which range from sub-micron to millimetres feature sizes are fabricated using the tools of the microelectronics industry from materials such as metals, silicon, and polymers. However, to date, large-scale manufacture of microneedles has been limited because of the high cost and complexity of microfabrication techniques.
This thesis aims to develop new manufacturing methods that may overcome the complexity of microneedle fabrication and scale-up problems. Three different microfabrication methods were investigated. (1) Silicon microneedles were manufactured through deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) with variable heights and tip sharpness. A series of experiments were also performed to investigate the influence of design and process parameters on the fabrication outcomes. (2) Plastic microneedle arrays were fabricated by three-dimensional (3D) printing. (3) A great variety of microneedle array geometries were manufactured using 3D laser lithography. The novel microneedle array design and fabrication technique proposed in this thesis may facilitate the manufacture of low-cost patches for drug delivery and collection of subcutaneous capillary blood or interstitial fluid.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Prewett, Philip D. and Anthony, Carl
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Department:School of Engineering
Additional Information:

Degree jointly awarded with The University of New South Wales.

Publication resulting from research:

High-fidelity replication of thermoplastic microneedles with open microfluidic channels, by Zahra Faraji Rad, et al., Microsystems & Nanoengineering 3, 17034 (2017), doi:10.1038/micronano.2017.34, Published online: 09 October 2017,

Subjects:TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:6734
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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