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09/04/2013

Painless, easier, microneedle tuberculosis test

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    A new microneedle patch will make TB tests not only painless, but also more accurate.
Currently, tests for tuberculosis are carried out by injecting a bit of a purified TB derivative just below the skin at a precise depth and angle, and an improper injection, along with other factors, can cause a false result. In contrast, the patch - consisting of tiny needles coated with the derivative - will be applied like putting on a band aid. The needles will be too short to reach the nerves that signal pain, and, because the depth of the injection will be determined by the length of the needle rather than relying on the angle of delivery, there will be little room for error.
    As an added bonus, the patch will be made of chitin, a biodegradable material made from the exoskeletons of insects and crustaceans.
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Dr. Gibbson
 
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