University of Petra Development of a Novel Oral Drug Delivery System for Insulin

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Development of a Novel Oral Drug Delivery System for Insulin

The Faculty of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences (FPMS) at the University of Petra (UOP), Amman, Jordan was established in 1991. It grants Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy, Nutrition and Master’s degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences. Recently, FPMS was accredited by ACPE (Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education), USA.

FPMS excels in education, scientific research and community services. One of the important achievements was the development of a drug delivery system for oral insulin by using phospholipids as a carrier in the form of nanoparticles. The designed nanoparticles were from natural sources; i.e. chitosan based. Chitosan is a safe, biocompatible, polymer (polysaccharide) extracted from sea crustaceans shells, e.g. prawns, crabs, as well as from the cell walls of fungi. The use of low molecular weight chitosan polymer with fatty acids was implemented to produce oily emulsions as carrier materials.

An article was published in 2009 entitled “Enhancement of Oral Bioavailability of Insulin in Humans” A Badwan, M Remawi, N Qinna, A Elsayed, T Arafat, M Melhim , O Abu Hijleh and N Idkaidek, Neuroendocrinology Letters: 30(1), 101-105; in which oral insulin formulation bioavailability and action was shown promising for the development of oral insulin products. Later, the current work won the Best Paper Award of 2017 by the American Oil Chemists’ Society (AOCS). Recently, the project won Prince El-Hassan Bin Talal Award for Scientific Excellence 2018. The prestigious award, which was founded in 1995, aims to encourage educational, scientific and technological endeavors in institutions concerned with education and training in Jordan, and to develop the performance of educational institutions, teachers and students.

Furthermore, research group leader (Prof. Mayyas Al-Remawi) later won The Association of Arab Universities (AARU) Award. AARU called 330 members from Arab universities and higher education institutions for nominations for the Distinguished Researcher Award in Health and Medical Sciences, including all Arab Academics working in the professions of Medicine, Pharmacology and Medical Sciences. His research gained European, Canadian and International patents among 12 scientific researches that were published in peer reviewed and indexed scientific journals on oral delivery system of insulin and other topics.

Developing oral insulin delivery system as an alternative for insulin injections will surely enhance and ease daily life of diabetic patients. Furthermore, the new findings will decrease the number of daily doses by using long acting medications. A positive implication is expected on the behalf of this research on the life style of patients and significant economic effects. Way to go UOP & FPMS!