Insulin Ingestion Through Capsules

Thomas Coder, Staff Writer

A research team at MIT recently developed a new form of insulin through an oral dosage. Each capsule contains a small needle that contains insulin, and the capsule injects the insulin into the stomach upon reaching it. The needle is attached to a compressed spring that is made of sugar. Once the capsule reaches stomach fluid, the sugar will dissolve and the nearly microscopic needle will inject into the stomach lining. The tip of the needle is made, almost completely, of compact insulin. The two main concerns from this capsule are whether or not a user will feel the injection and if the capsule will inject into the stomach lining 100% of the time. Since the stomach lining has no pain receptors users will not be able to feel it. This leads to the question of whether or not the injection will enter the stomach lining 100% of the time. The researchers claim that the capsule will always orient itself in the stomach so that the needle will only inject into the stomach lining. If the injection of insulin fell somewhere else in the stomach, no harm would ensue, but stomach acids would dissolve it almost instantly making it ineffectual. This alternative method can be helpful to those who have type 2 diabetes, as a pill can replace injection.