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Tissue electroporation for localized drug delivery
Weaver JC, Langer R, Potts RO
Electromagnetic Fields 250: 301-316 1995

Tissue electroporation involves (1) the creation of aqueous pathways across lipid-containing barriers such as cell membranes, layers of cells, and the stratum corneum (SC) of the skin; and (2) locally driven ionic and molecular transport through these pathways. The very localized concentration of electrically insulating lipids that is responsible for much of the barrier function of cell membranes, layers of cells, and the SC also causes an ''amplification'' of an applied electric field pulse, E(pulse), in the sense that after a charging time a much larger electric field, E(barrier) appears across the barrier This intrinsic localization at the site of the barrier is a key attribute because it results in a concentration of the physical field where it is needed to cause enhanced molecular transport. Electrical measurements before and after pulsing provide a vapid method for assessing the degree and extent of recovery of electroporation. Electroporation is fundamentally mild, leaves no chemical residues, and has the potential to deliver water-soluble molecules of a wide range of size and charge to desired sites within tissues.