Synthetic lining offers better drug delivery to small intestine

Wednesday, August 26, 2020 - 15:50 in Health & Medicine

A newly developed synthetic lining that coats the small intestine may have potential to treat a variety of conditions, ranging from lactose intolerance to diabetes and obesity, according to investigators from Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A team of researchers has been working on an innovative way of sustainably delivering drugs and influencing nutrient absorption in the gut by using the gastrointestinal synthetic epithelial lining (GSEL) system. Because GSEL is designed to coat the small intestine, an organ that plays a key role in drug and nutrient absorption, researchers have demonstrated the GSEL system’s ability to adhere to segments of the gastrointestinal tract from pigs and humans. In porcine models, the team has reported potential applications for the system in treating not only diabetes, but tropical diseases such as schistosomiasis. Image showing fresh resected tissue specimens from porcine small intestine without (left​) and with (right)...

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