In search of more inhalable drugs


11 Sep 2015

This week we talk to pharmaceutical scientist Mehra Haghi about her work developing novel formulations based on surfactants of the lung that have been successful in delivering a wide range of drugs via inhalation.

What’s the issue your research is trying to solve?

Novel formulation platforms for inhalation drug delivery

What have you discovered so far?

Although a lot of traditional respiratory formulations have been successful in delivering commonly used drugs via inhalation, these approaches are not capable of formulating new treatments such as biopharmaceuticals (vaccines, antibodies and proteins) and some of the new antibiotics. Novel formulations based on surfactants of the lung have been successful in formulating and delivering some of these new treatments as inhalable products.

What’s been your biggest hurdle?

Funding is the major hurdle, but in the lab, optimizing the stability of the formulations has been the biggest challenge.

How far is your work from impacting patient care?

Although the in vitro experiments in the lab have been very promising, the clinical impact in terms of patient care might be 10 years away.

If you could discover one thing in your research, what would it be? (e.g what’s your holy grail?)

Effective targeted respiratory delivery of biopharmaceuticals.

What does your perfect day look like?

Exercise in the morning, promising data from my research, positive outcome of a funding application or a paper, nice dinner with my husband and reading a book afterwards.

What would you like your epitaph to say?

Lived fully, loved truly and smiled
 Mehra Haggi

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