A new type of pill manufacturing technology could produce a material that helps diabetics to administer insulin orally. The substance, derived from the shells of a certain type of shrimp, is being developed in Taiwan .
According to scientists at the National Tsing Hua University, the shell could protect a drug from stomach acid, a traditional problem for oral insulin delivery. The results were published in the Biomacromolecules journal, and reported by the BBC.
The shell spheres are made of a substance called chitosa, a naturally occurring compound from shrimp shells. Insulin can be placed inside these spheres, which then theoretically deliver the drug into the bloodstream. Although initial tests were effective, the dosage required was far higher than a diabetic would usually need.
In order for the technology to be widely employed, further clinical trials are a necessity.

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