Microneedles for needle-free injections

Departments - Small world

DebioJect overcomes challenges of classical intradermal delivery techniques.

June 19, 2014
Elizabeth Engler Modic

Unlike other intradermal delivery systems, DebioJect is made of hollow microneedles with a unique, side-protected delivery hole. By placing the hole on the side of the needle at a precise depth, the skin can be punctured without coring and without removing any tissue. Because the skin remains intact above the side hole, leakage during injection is prevented and healing is improved. Furthermore, injecting through the side hole, where the needle does not apply direct pressure on the tissue, diffuses liquid more easily at a better defined and controlled depth. This enables pain-free injections of up to 0.5ml in only 5 seconds.

Design, MEMS technology

The innovation of DebioJect is in the design of the microneedles produced with microelectro mechanical systems (MEMS) technology. By controlling exactly the position and orientation of the side hole on each microneedle, it is possible to target a precise intradermal site and control drug or vaccine distribution. At the same time, the tip of the microneedle can be made extremely sharp and without any protrusion to enter the skin at a perfect 90° angle.

MEMS manufacturing technology makes the microneedles very strong and provides excellent biocompatibility properties. Thanks to the process, DebioJect microneedles can be manufactured with high precision at low cost.

Based on a patented biocompatible MEMS system, this technology is intended to improve intradermal and hypodermic drug delivery and interstitial fluid diagnostics.

Multiple possible configurations

DebioJect is available in multiple configurations: one or several silicon microneedles, having one or multiple hollow bores connected to a syringe. While every microneedle is smaller than a 33G needle, the dimension of the bore is well adapted for delivery of larger particles and long peptides.

Watch a video on the DebioJect at

The DebioJect is characterized by its side holes, which prevent the coring effect that normally blocks the inner through-hole channel of microneedles during skin penetration. The side hole of each DebioJect is protected against any such coring while leaving the entire tip part of the needle available for a better circular penetration of the skin. DebioJect needles ensure minimal damage, as no tissue is removed at the insertion of the needles during skin penetration, and eventually a better and quicker healing of the injection site.

The length of the DebioJect is designed in such a way that almost no pain is felt during insertion. The DebioJect could be designed between 300µm and 1,000µm in lengths to avoid most pain receptors in the skin. Each DebioJect microneedle is equivalent to a Gauge 39, resulting in an important reduction of the dead volume usually found in regular needles (from microliters to nanoliters) and thus saving significant amounts of drug compound. The total fluid resistance of a DebioJect patch, comprising a typical array of 25 microneedles, is not different from the one observed with an existing Gauge 24 needle for subcutaneous injection.