Alliqua, a US-based wound management and drug delivery company, is launching a preclinical proof-of-principal study of an experimental hydrogel transdermal patch containing lidocaine, in an effort to take advantage of the growing market for drug delivery and wound dressing management.

According to the company, the global drug delivery market is expected to reach $224.2bn by the year 2017, while the global wound dressing market is expected to touch $6bn by then.

The US and Europe are expected to be two leading markets for wound dressings, with the US going to account for over one-third of the market worldwide.

The demand for advanced dressings has grown over the recent years due to interactive/bioactive and antimicrobial dressings, including hydrogels.  

Alliqua claims to manufacture its hydrogels through a carefully monitored process to ensure product quality.

Alliqua’s hydrogels claim to offer painless adhesion to the human body, stability of form and composition, purity, reproducibility, compatibility with active ingredients, and high water content.

Alliqua Biomedical CEO James Saperstein has stated that the lidocaine patch development program is the company’s first step towards building a portfolio that leverages its hydrogel platform.

The lidocaine hydrogel patches will be developed with the intent to treat localized acute pain, including post-operative pain, back pain, and pain associated with sport injuries and arthritis.

Alliqua says results from this preclinical proof-of-principle study will be readily available later in the third quarter.