Immunotherapy is a long-term approach to treatment that aims to lessen the severity of the symptoms caused by allergies, through the administration of slowly increasing quantities of antigens. Typically this has involved allergy shots (injections) or sublingual (under the tongue) drops or tablets. What’s different about DBV Technologies’ solution is that it involves a less messy, less painful form of application – an adhesive patch called Viaskin.
The patch comprises a titanium backing, an adhesive crown and minute quantities of antigens or allergens, which are sprayed upon the backing in an electrically-charged stream of particles from the electrospray, which you can see in the photograph below. Once the patch is actually placed on the body, body heat turns the now dry antigens back into a liquid, which is able to pass through the upper layers of the epidermis, which is why this technique is also called epicutaneous immunotherapy. Once through the skin, it starts the process of desensitization.