A shot in the arm

Biologics, a class of therapeutics derived from living organisms, offer enormous advantages to patients battling challenging diseases and disorders. Treatments based on biologics can boost the immune system to stem attacks from infections or target specific pathways to block the formation of tumors.

“These drugs, which have been around for just the last 20 years, do magic,” says Amir Erfani, a postdoc in the MIT Department of Chemical Engineering (ChemE). “They can save millions of people around the world.”

But the unrivaled effectiveness of biologics comes at a cost. They can be difficult to administer, often demanding time-consuming intravenous (IV) infusions at clinics. Whether for patients struggling with life-threatening or lifelong conditions, the prospect of spending hours away from home, every few weeks, can prove extremely daunting.

Now, new work from an MIT team in collaboration with the Merck pharmaceutical company, which funded the research, suggests a practical solution for…
Click here to view original post