Sparking Innovation in Drug Delivery
In an industry as diverse as pharmaceuticals, there is much that different disciplines can learn from each another. Here, I present a few potential sparks of inspiration by asking if and how the world of drug delivery can benefit from a more holistic use of the innovations occurring all around us – and vice versa.
Richard N. Dalby |
According to the US Department of Commerce (1), the US is the largest medical device market in the world and is expected to be valued at over $130 billion by 2016. The same source reports that there are more than 6,500 medical device companies in the US. I am a co-organizer of the Respiratory Drug Delivery (RDD) meetings and it occurred to me that there is much that my field could teach medical device developers in other areas. For example, could some of the latest advances in inhaler technology be applied to the development of autoinjectors or influence the design of new devices? Conversely, could innovations in other medical devices affect the development of platforms to administer inhaled drugs? Ultimately, combining all of our knowledge and learning could be beneficial to both pharmaceutical development and patients.
Our RDD conferences have traditionally addressed contemporary science issues that affect combination products (hardware and drug-containing formulation packaged together), but the science we cover extends far beyond pulmonary and nasal inhalation products; in part, because the conferences showcase innovations that have applications for other pharmaceutical solid, non-aqueous and aqueous liquids, and dispersed systems – for both small and large molecules. The technologies created in the inhalation industry have enabled developments at many companies making injectors, novel parenteral formulations, biopharmaceuticals and specialty orphan products.
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