North Carolina Patent of the Month – February 2021

Aerosol generating devices are used in respiratory treatments, like asthma. However getting a consistent, accurate, and verifiable dose with desired droplet size is difficult. Additional issues arise in getting patients to use inhalers properly without over or underdosing themselves. The inhaler also has mechanical issues, with product building up as it condenses along the walls following ejection. Pneuma Respiratory, Inc. have redesigned the classic inhaler to effectively overcome these limitations.

The system would involve a delivery device that uses piezoelectric power to create a stream of droplets. Piezoelectricity is a charge generated in solid materials from applied mechanical stress. The piezoelectricity oscillates an aperture plate at a frequency capable of generating a stream. 70% of the ejected droplets are less than 5 μm in diameter. The device has a 90 degree trajectory change within, which filters larger droplets from the stream, helping to create a uniform drop size. The aperture plate is dome shaped, providing direction for the stream and preventing build up along the side. Rather than mechanically forcing an ejection like an inhaler, this design uses differential pressure sensors. A change in pressure activates the ejector mechanism. As a user inhales, they pull air through the device which triggers the pressure sensor. This device will improve the accuracy of doses administered so that patients are receiving what they require, no more and no less.

About Pneuma Respiratory

Pneuma Respiratory is focused on creating therapeutic treatments for diseases of the lungs using a digital platform for inhaled drug delivery. Their focus is to improve the potential effectiveness of currently available and novel drugs, with the initial target being approved therapeutics for COPD. Pneuma is leveraging more than three decades of healthcare research and product development experience along with hand held device design and manufacturing expertise.

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