These tiny fibers may prove better at delivering drugs to the brain

[Image courtesy of Johanna Zech, for Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg]

German researchers have developed mats made of biodegradable fibers only a few microns thick that could prove advantageous to deliver certain drugs to the brain.

The drug nimodipine, for example, could prevent nerve cells from dying after brain surgery. Health providers already use it to treat cerebral hemorrhages, but it degrades very quickly and has undesirable side effects when delivered intravenously, according to the research team out of Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg and University Hospital Halle.

“The neurosurgeons wanted the drug to be applied locally in order to reduce potential side effects,” said professor Karsten Mäder from the Institute of Pharmacy at MLU.

Mäder and his colleagues turned to PLGA, a biodegradable polymer commonly used in medtech, and incorporating nimodipine into th…

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