The new drug will surprise many sceptics who did not believe insulin could be delivered orally because they doubted it could survive the onslaught of digestive juices so it could have the intended effect.
The US team successfully encapsulated insulin using Cholestosomes-- a neutral, lipid-based particle -- that can be administered orally with tiny vesicles that can deliver insulin where it needs to go without injecting
The lead researcher Mary McCourt, Professor at Niagara University in New York, said the new vesicles are made of naturally occurring lipid molecules which are normal building blocks of fats adding that they are unlike other lipid-based drug carriers, called liposomes.
Computer modelling showed that once the lipids are assembled into spheres, they form neutral particles resistant to attack from stomach acids.
Drugs can be loaded inside, and the tiny packages can pass through the stomach without degrading.
The results were presented at the 252nd National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), in Philadelphia, recently