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A. Drug Delivery Systems Of The Future

Narrator: This is Science Today. A sophisticated drug delivery system the size of a credit card is being developed by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley. Dorian Liepmann, a professor of mechanical engineering, says these cards would be very useful for diabetics to self-administer a continuous flow of insulin.

Liepmann: Diabetics have to inject themselves two to three times a day and when you get too little insulin, of course you go into coma. You get too much, you get microvascular damage. With this device, we could have a continuous flow of insulin so that you can keep the level at the right level.

Narrator: Basically, this plastic card will be equipped with a silicon wafer about the size of a fingertip and contain microscopic, heat-activated mixers and bubble pumps.

Liepmann: This will attach to your shoulder. We can make needles from silicon that are the same size as a mosquito proboscis, so that's really small - about the size of a human hair. You would then actively deliver drugs through the skin.

Narrator: Liepmann hopes to have the system working by the end of this year. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.