Chemical Engineering


18 Dec 2020

Department research discovers that a dash of salt could revolutionise drug delivery

A new study in the Department of Chemical Engineering suggests that - rather than a spoonful of sugar helping the medicine go down - a dash of salt is key to progressing important medical areas such as drug delivery. 

Naval Singh, a PhD student in the University’s School of Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering (AACME), and Dr Guido Bolognesi, an expert in bioengineering, hope the new particle trapping mechanism they have developed will “open exciting new avenues for the development of new low-cost, portable and ultrasensitive devices for bio-analysis and diagnostics”.

Their study, published in the journal Physical Review Letters, shows how salt can be used to accumulate submicron particles in dead-end regions known as ‘microcavities’ in a matter of minutes and how the process can be reversed.

Biological fluids are full of particles, and being able to trap and release them is a key underpinning capability for several technological applications, including the analysis of body fluids such as blood and saliva.

Find out more about the research here