Portrait of  Sofia Economidou

Sofia Economidou

Research Student


Research Topic: 3D Printed Microneedles for Transdermal Drug Delivery


MEng in Mechanical and Aeronautics Engineering, Division of Applied Mechanics, Technology of Materials and Biomechanics, University of Patras, Patras, Greece

Research interests

Transdermal drug delivery is an appealing alternative to the traditional administration routes but its broader adoption is restricted due to the low permeability of the skin tissue. Sofia's PhD work aims at developing sophisticated microneedle-based systems that are able to surpass the skin barrier, utilising the cutting-edge technology of 3D printing. The use of 3D printing allows the fast and easy personalisation of drug delivery systems to serve individual patient needs.  Employing a variety of 3D printing technologies, their potential as effective and sustainable techniques for microneedle manufacturing in a fast and cost-effective manner, is explored. The 3D printed microneedle systems are evaluated in terms of mechanical performance to reassure safety during application. Their ability to convey molecules directly to the dermal microcirculation is assessed both in vitro and in vivo. This research project intends to demostrate that technology can be a key element towards modernisation and personalisation of drug delivery.


Supervisors: Dr Gurprit Lall and Professor Dennis Douroumis 

Research Group: Chemistry and Drug Delivery 



Peer-reviewed Journals:

1.	Md J. Uddin, N. Scoutaris, S.N. Economidou, C. Giraud, B.Z. Chowdhry, R.F. Donnelly, D. Douroumis (2020). 3D printed microneedles for anticancer therapy of skin tumours, Materials Science and Engineering: C 107, 110248.

2.	S.N. Economidou, C.P. Pissinato Pere, A. Reid, Md J. Uddin, J.F.C. Windmill, D.A. Lamprou, D.Douroumis (2019). 3D printed microneedle patches using stereolithography (SLA) for intradermal insulin delivery, Materials Science and Engineering: C 102, 743-755.

3.	C.P. Pissinato Pere, S.N. Economidou, N. Scoutaris, C. Ziraud, J.S. Boateng, B.D. Alexander, D. Douroumis (2017). 3D printed microneedles for insulin skin delivery, International Journal of Pharmaceutics 544 (2), 425-432.

4.	S.N. Economidou, D.A. Lamprou, D. Douroumis (2017). 3D printing applications for transdermal drug delivery, International Journal of Pharmaceutics, 544 (2), 415-424.

5.	Economidou S.N. and Karalekas D. (2016). Optical sensor-based measurements of thermal expansion coefficient in additive manufacturing, Polymer Testing 51, 117-121. 

Book Chapters:

1.	Karalekas D., Joe K., Sanjayan J., Economidou S.N., (2018). Additive manufacturing of polymeric materials (Chapter 5), in Additive Manufacturing: Materials, Processes, Quantifications and Applications, Jing Zhang Yeon-Gil Jung (eds.), Elsevier, May 2018 (ISBN:9780128121559).

Conference Activities: 

1.	S.N. Economidou, M.J. Marques, A. Podoleanu, Md J. Uddin, D. Douroumis (2019). 3D printed microneedles combined with a microelectromechanical system (MEMS) for transdermal drug delivery. PharmSci 2019, Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Greenwich, London (2019).

2.	S.N. Economidou, M.J. Marques, A. Podoleanu, Md J. Uddin, D. Douroumis (2019). A smart 3D printed microneedle-based microelectromechanical system (MEMS) for controlled transdermal drug delivery. Controlled Release Society Annual Meeting, Valencia, Spain.

3.	S. N. Economidou, C. P. Pissinato Pere, D. Douroumis (2018). On The Pain Free Treatment Of Diabetes: 3D Printed Microneedles For Insulin Administration, CELLINK Collaborative Partnership Conference, Miami, USA. 

4.	S.N. Economidou, C.P. Pissinato Pere, D.A. Lamprou, D. Douroumis (2018). Fabrication Of 3D Printed Microneedles For Transdermal Delivery Of Insulin, United Kingdom and Ireland Controlled Release Society (UKICRS) annual conference, Belfast, UK.

5.	S.N. Economidou, Ch. Kousiatza, N. Chatzidai, D. Karalekas (2016). Intra-Layer Thermal Monitoring in the Fused Deposition Modeling Technique, 17th International Conference on Experimental Mechanics (ICEM 17), July 3-7, 2016, Rhodes, Greece.

6.	S.N.Economidou, Ch.Kousiatza, D.Karalekas (2015). On the direction-dependent thermal behavior of layered structures fabricated via Fused Deposition Modeling, 18th International Conference on Composite Structures, ICCS18-2015, 15-18 June 2015, Lisbon, Portugal.

7.	S.N.Economidou, D.Karalekas (2015). Post-Built Warpage Investigation of 3D Printed Layered Structures via Digital Image Correlation, 8th National Conference on Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) of the Hellenic Society of NDT, 8-9 May 2015, Athens, Greece. 

8.	S.N.Economidou, D.V.Portan, A.Basturescu, L.Kontaxis, G.C.Papanicolaou (2014). Electrochemical manufacturing of TiO2 nanotubes: effect on the interfacial pull-out mechanism, Session in English, 9th Workshop of the Hellenic Society for Biomaterials, 7-8 November 2014, Athens, Greece.

9.	Economidou S.N., Portan D.V., Papanicolaou G.C. (2013). On the Titanium-Polymer Interfacial Pull-out Mechanism, Session in English, 8th Workshop of the Hellenic Society for Biomaterials, 15-16 November 2013, Athens, Greece. 

10.	Economidou S.N., Portan D.V., Papanicolaou G.C. (2013). Theoretical and Εxperimental Ιnvestigation of the Ιnterfacial Pull-Out Mechanism of Various Materials Embedded in a Polymeric Matrix, Poster Session, 5th International Conference on Structural Analysis of Advanced Materials, ICSAAM-2013, 23-26 September 2013, Island of Kos, Greece (poster).