Noninvasive acoustic tweezers and efficiency of drug delivery

Noninvasive acoustic tweezers and efficiency of drug delivery

Blood flows with high velocity, making it hard to spatially concentrate and manipulate biotherapeutic agents within the circulatory system. To improve current drug delivery methods, the researchers developed a tornado-inspired acoustic vortex tweezer (AVT) that employs destructive interference to produce net forces for noninvasive intravascular trapping and manipulation of lipid-shelled gaseous microbubbles (MBs).

The authors showed that the AVT could be used to successfully trap MBs and increase their local concentration in both static and flow conditions. In addition, the AVT could selectively trap MBs without trapping or damaging red blood cells.

The authors found that AVT trapping performance was influenced by several factors, including pressure, duty cycle, the number of transducer elements, and frequency. The authors also demonstrated the in vivo trapping capability of AVTs in mice and found that MB signals within mouse capillaries could be locally improved 1.7-fold, and the location of trapped MBs could be manipulated during the initiation of an AVT.

The results demonstrate the effectiveness of AVTs for noninvasive trapping and manipulation of MBs, and the technique could be used to increase local drug concentrations and improve the efficiency of drug delivery.

According to the authors, the AVT technique could enable the systemic administration of drugs at very low doses.