• The Gill Lab

  • Gold nanoparticles
    Gold nanoparticles as a novel
    platform for development and
    delivery of influenza vaccines.
    (Image Credit: Wenqian Tao)
  • Confocal image of pollens
    Plant pollens and spores as
    a novel platform for oral
    delivery of vaccines.
    (Image Credit: Yunzhe Ma)
  • Microneedle array
    Painless microneedles for
    vaccine and drug delivery to various
    tissues of the human body.
    (Image Credit: Harvinder Gill)
  • SEM of pollens
    Plant pollens and spores as
    a novel platform for oral
    delivery of vaccines.
    (Image Credit: Jasim Uddin)
  • Oral cavity histology
    Microneedles for local delivery
    of cancer medications to
    oral cavity for management of
    oro-pharyngeal tumors.
    (Image Credit: Yunzhe Ma)

Oral cavity vaccination using microneedles


Oral cavity is an easily accessible and immunologically attractive site for mucosal vaccination. For example, two palatine tonsils, two tubal tonsils, an adenoid and a lingual tonsil are anatomically arranged in the oral-nasopharyngeal cavity to form the Waldeyer’s ring, which can potentially mediate strong immunological responses towards antigens delivered to oral cavity tissues. However, the transport barrier offered by the stratified epithelium covering the oral cavity tissues and the poor residence time resulting from salivary flow has limited the use of oral cavity for vaccination. We are investigating microneedles for enhancing vaccine delivery to the oral cavity. Arrays of microneedles can achieve targeted delivery of vaccines directly in to the oral cavity mucosa, completely bypassing the diffusion barrier offered by the stratified squamous epithelium. This approach also targets the antigens to the abundant population of Langerhans cells found in the oral mucosal epithelium. We are collaborating with Dr. Nancy Haigwood (Director: Oregon National Primate Research Center) to investigate the oral cavity for HIV mucosal vaccination. (⇐BACK)

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