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Title: Laser Fabrication of Polymeric Microneedles for Transdermal Drug Delivery
Microneedles provide a transdermal pathway for drug delivery, cosmetic infusion, vaccine administration, and disease diagnostics. Microneedle fabrication relies on the interplay of several variables which include design parameters, material properties, and processing conditions. In this research, our group explores the effect of design parameters and process variables for laser ablation of microneedles within a Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) mold. An Ytterbium laser (200W) was utilized to study the effect of five inputs factors (laser power, pulse width, number of repetitions, laser waveform, and interval time between laser pulses) on two output factors (diameter and height) of the fabricated microneedles. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymer was cast within the PMMA microneedle mold. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was employed to image topographical features of the microneedles. Further, mechanical testing of the microneedles was conducted to evaluate the buckling load and deformation behavior of the microneedle array. A 20W pulse laser with trapezoidal waveform resulted in optimal microneedle topography with an aspect ratio of 1.2. ANOVA results (α = 0.05) depicted that laser power and number of repetitions were significant factors determining the geometrical features of the microneedle array. This research establishes a framework for the design and manufacturing of customized microneedles for precision medicine.
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Journal Name:
Proceedings of the 2021 IISE Annual Conference
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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