Saturday, 7 July 2018

When Sci-Fi Meets Neuropathy: Nanotechnology To The Rescue

Today's short post from (see link below) may excite the Sci-Fi buffs amongst you but should also not be underestimated, as a potential delivery system for drugs in the future. It talks about using nano-technology (you know...the science of using very small things to operate in both machines and bodies!) to deliver time-release, cannabinoids to specific areas of the nervous system, to relieve neuropathic pain for an extended period of time. Sounds fantastic! Will cut out the use of daily strong pain killers and will reduce side effects and exclude unwanted elements that cause them. The question is of course....just how far into the future are we looking here? Well, the answer may be not as far as you might think. The idea developed by researchers at the University of Seville in Spain, has been picked up by American companies and they are embarking on developing the technology with a view to marketing it within a growing patient base across the world. Believe it or not and whether it makes you smile in anticipation, or groan with cynical 'we've seen it all before', it may just be our salvation! Watch this space.

Can Nanotechnology help relieve neuropathic pain?
 Chronic Pain Richard Lowes December 6th 2017

Nanotechnology, which is science and engineering on an extremely small scale, has long been heralded as the next big thing in a host of fields, including medicine. Of particular interest to medical science is the field of nanomaterials, which are materials whose atomic or molecular-scale dimensions result in them having unique properties.

Researchers at the University if Seville in Spain have now patented the technology necessary to create a time release capsule for medication from a matrix made of polymer nanoparticles. Further research into using this technology to deliver cannabinoids suggests that a single dose taken orally may be effective in relieving neuropathic pain for many days. Accordingly, it should be possible to significantly extend the painkilling effect of the drug while at the same time reducing the dose required.

With this delivery method providing a steady release of the active ingredients over a longer period of time, the technology particularly lends itself to chronic conditions. For cannabinoids, it has certainly proved significantly more effective than inhaling or ingesting them.

Another advantage to delivering cannabinoids in this way is that the psychoactive ingredient, THC, cannot cross the blood-brain barrier, removing any psychotropic effect, which many find unwelcome.

The licence to use this technology has been obtained by Nevada-based GB Sciences Inc. They have been quick to identify the importance of this development and are now actively working with the researchers in Spain to further develop and ultimately market the technology for use in the treatment of chronic pain.

You may also be interested in the following articles:

Can Chronic Pain sufferers benefit from ‘big brother’ technology?

Are Chronic Pain sufferers exposed to a medication time bomb?

Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) as a treatment for chronic pain

Assistance Dogs for those suffering CRPS and Chronic Pain

Chronic Pain linked to increased risk of Dementia

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