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This version of NSU News has been archived as of February 28, 2019. To search through archived articles, visit nova.edu/search. To access the new version of NSU News, visit news.nova.edu.

This version of SharkBytes has been archived as of February 28, 2019. To search through archived articles, visit nova.edu/search. To access the new version of SharkBytes, visit sharkbytes.nova.edu.

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Division of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
Nova Southeastern University
3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33314-7796

nova.edu/prmc

SharkBytes Archives

Contact

Division of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
Nova Southeastern University
3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33314-7796

(954) 262-5353
(800) 541-6682 x25353
Fax: (954) 262-3954
communications@nova.edu

NSU Research Spotlight: NSU Researcher Develops a New Non-Invasive Dosage Form for the Treatment of Anaphylaxis

Dr. Rawas-Qalaji-NSU-1

Mutasem Rawas-Qalaji, B.Pharm., Ph.D.

Studies have shown that the United States has one of the highest incidences of fatal anaphylaxis in the world. For anaphylaxis treatment in community settings, epinephrine intramuscular injection using an auto-injector, e.g. EpiPen®, in the thigh is universally recommended. Despite this, many people at risk of anaphylaxis in community settings do not carry their prescribed auto-injectors consistently and hesitate to use them when anaphylaxis occurs.

Mutasem Rawas-Qalaji, B. Pharm., Ph.D., associate professor of pharmaceutics at NSU’s College of Pharmacy, along with his research team, developed a novel sublingual tablet that disintegrates and releases the medicinal ingredient, epinephrine, under the patient’s tongue within less than 30 seconds. These rapidly disintegrating sublingual epinephrine tablets are taste-masked to enhance tablet’s palatability and patients’ acceptance. Recently, the NSU research team was able to significantly enhance the amount of drug that gets absorbed from the sublingual cavity into the blood, i.e. the relative bioavailability, through reducing the particles size of epinephrine using micro and nanotechnology.

“This new sublingual epinephrine tablets will offer a non-invasive, user-friendly, cost-effective, and more stable alternative dosage form compared to auto-injectors,” Qalaji said.

The research team is led by Mutasem Rawas-Qalaji, B. Pharm., Ph.D., at NSU and Keith J. Simons, Ph.D., F. Estelle Simons, MD, FAAAAI, and Ousama Rachid, Ph.D. at the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.

Their findings are published in the peer-reviewed AAPS PharmSciTech, Mar 4, 2015 (Epub ahead of print), the official journal of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS), in an article titled “Sublingual Diffusion of Epinephrine Microparticles from Rapidly Disintegrating Tablets for the Potential First-Aid Treatment of Anaphylaxis: In Vitro and Ex Vivo Study” and in the peer-reviewed J Pharm Pharmacol 2015; 67(1):20-25, the official journal of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, in an article titled “Epinephrine Microcrystal Sublingual Tablet Formulation: Enhanced Absorption in a Preclinical Model

This work was partially supported by the President’s Faculty Research & Development Grant, NSU, No. 335491.