Pea-sized pill delivers insulin shot from inside the stomach

WASHINGTON (AP) — Scientists have figured out how to hide a tiny shot inside a pill, to inject medicines like insulin from inside the stomach.

The pea-sized gadget was inspired by the shape of a tortoise shell, able to land in the stomach and roll into position. Then a micro-needle made of dried insulin pops into the stomach wall.

Many drugs can’t survive the harsh digestive system, making it hard to develop oral versions. MIT-led researchers say they’ve bypassed that problem. Thursday, they reported that when tested in pigs, the ingestible injection lowered blood sugar to levels comparable to traditional shots.

More research is needed before human testing but researchers say the method might one day make a variety of medicines easier to take.

The study was published in the journal Science.

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