Easing the pain of medication

Cambridge Consultants has developed an inexpensive one-time use inhaler that is expected to bring ease and convenience to mass medication and vaccination.

The product, called Conix One, is based around a ‘reverse flow cyclone’ and contains no moving parts or propellants.

The inhaler is made from a single piece of plastic and costs just four US cents (two pence) to manufacture in annual volumes of more than five million.

This low cost is comparable with that of syringes, and is cheaper than the asthma inhalers on the market today, which are typically made of some 20 parts and cost at least 40 cents to manufacture.

The inhaler also presents savings on distribution cost compared to syringes. Drugs in liquid form typically require refrigeration, but Conix One inhalers use a foil seal to protect the drug from moisture.

Conix One could one day replace syringes in mass vaccination

The swirling action within the cyclone is said to cause effective deagglomeration, enabling a large percentage of drug to be delivered efficiently to the lung. The cyclone chamber releases a steady flow of drug over two seconds to make better use of a patient’s lung power.

Brian Barney, head of drug delivery at Cambridge Consultants, said: ‘We believe this inhaler will fundamentally change the way we treat many diseases on a global scale.

‘Designed with global pandemics, like H5N1, in mind, we have combined cutting-edge technology with smart product design, enabling us to achieve something that has never been seen before. It is akin to providing the performance of a sports car at a cost comparable with a moped.’