One of the most asked questions the ADSHG receives is “Why don’t we have an EpiPen style injection for our hydrocortisone emergency injection?”  Up until now the answer has been the complexities of science and the stability of the medication. But now thanks to SOLUtion Medical this request is becoming a reality. The ADSHG is delighted to help fund SOLUtion’s research to develop a simple, easy to use device to reduce complexity and difficulties of injections, providing an EpiPen-like experience.

SOLUtion’s CEO Julia Anthony, has Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, a primary adrenal insufficiency condition, and knows first-hand the difficulties of current adrenal rescue medication.

We are delighted to award SOLUtion Medical our 2020 Professor John Wass Emergency Medicine Award, to help fund this vital research project. This annual award is given to focus on innovations and best practice in emergency medicine concerning adrenal insufficiency and adrenal crisis. Meet Julia and learn more about the research below.

Julia from SOLUtion Medical with ADSHG Trustee Dom on Zoom to award the research grant.

Research Facts:

  • Disease: Adrenal crisis management for those with adrenal insufficiency, including Addison’s Disease and Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia
  • Lead applicant: Julia Anthony, M.S. – Salt-Wasting Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia Survivor, Chief Executive Officer of SOLUtion Medical
  • Organisation: SOLUtion Medical
  • Type of grant: Professor John Wass Emergency Medical Research Grant
  • Status of grant: Work in progress
  • Amount of the original award: $13,000
  • Start date: November 10, 2020

What are the aims of this research?

Our research program is developing a one-step injector for delivering adrenal crisis medication in a rescue situation. With our device we plan to eliminate the need for cumbersome and confusing rescue kits, and replace those kits with a single, one-step device.

Why is this research important?

Virtually everyone at risk for an adrenal crisis must carry a rescue kit, and these kits are not straightforward or easy to use. As a result, too few people inject themselves with rescue medication at the onset of an adrenal crisis resulting in longer hospital stays, lower quality of life, and even death. A simple, easy to use device will reduce complexity and difficulties of injections, providing an EpiPen-like experience that is intended to improve compliance of rescue injections during an adrenal crisis.

How will findings benefit people with Addison’s disease and adrenal insufficiency?

By simplifying rescue injections, more sufferers of adrenal insufficiency will be empowered to carry and use their rescue medication. This will reduce mental burden, increase compliance, and improve the lives of those with adrenal insufficiency.


“Meet the Researcher” 

Congratulations and welcome Julia Anthony! Can you tell us more about what your research project means for people with Addison’s disease and adrenal insufficiency?

SOLUtion Medical is developing user-friendly delivery systems for reconstitutable drugs. These devices improve patient outcomes through increased adherence to patient injected life-saving medication. Current delivery systems for patient-injected drugs requiring reconstitution are complex and difficult to use, leading to errors and lack of compliance. SOLUtion has developed a proprietary injection system that provides one-step reconstitution. With our simpler, faster, and safer solution, our device will improve user experience and increase adherence, improve outcomes and decrease healthcare burden, and, most importantly, save lives.

What inspires you and SOLUtion Medical's passion for working to provide better treatments for people living with rare health conditions?

I would argue that my brother's health drove me to where SOLUtion is today more so than my own. Both myself and my brother have Salt-Wasting Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia and have almost died due to crisis multiple times throughout our lives.

Crises are reminders of our humanity, and its frailty. Often harsh and sudden reminders. After some serious introspection and considering what I wanted to pursue next in my graduate level schooling, I decided: never again would I want my brother to fear for his life due to his condition.

"I decided to make an autoinjector for adrenal crisis - a tangible improvement to our health management that would not only save lives, but also evoke education and advocacy for our often overlooked, rare disease. And with that began this journey."

Tell us a bit about your background and research?

I am SOLUtion’s Chief Executive Officer and a survivor of Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, a primary adrenal insufficiency condition, and know first-hand the trials and difficulties of current adrenal rescue medication. I hold a Masters Degree in medical device design. Dr. Jonathan Kiel, SOLUtion’s Chief Scientific Officer, is a veteran of multiple start-up companies with 20 years of research, development, and commercialization experience in health care and engineering sciences.

What are your research highlights to date?

Our device automatically mixes medication without requiring shaking or visual monitoring. Initial data shows our product mixes hydrocortisone sodium succinate (HSS) powder approximately 20X faster than the current standard of care in only user one step. We are presently working to optimize our product for manufacturing.

What are your plans for the future?

Our immediate goal is to complete an aseptic manufacturability study with our device, proving our delivery system can be filled with HSS using medically compliant processes. We expect to obtain approvals throughout the world so our device can be obtained by anyone at risk of an adrenal crisis regardless of location.   

Longer term, we envision our device as applicable to many different drugs and treatments, allowing more at-home usage of a variety of medications requiring mixing directly prior to injection.

With SOLUtion Medical being based in Philadelphia in the United States, how have you found it working on this international research?

Adrenal insufficiency and the risk of adrenal crises are global problems, and we are creating a global solution. Our team is confident we will be able to get our device to those living with adrenal insufficiency in other countries, like the UK. Though Brexit has caused some disruption to our distribution plan, we are working with our advisors and international experts, including Professor Richard J Ross MD, FRCP (Sheffield) to ensure our device is available in the UK in a timely, efficient, and accessible manner. Our international experts knowledge in the area of adrenal disease is invaluable to our progress. We work together to understand how physicians approach treatment options, understanding prescribing methods in the UK, provided insights into pricing aspects of the UK vs US, and a host of other aspects crucial to our business development.  

Do you have any advice that you would give to other researchers?

Stay the course. There are people who’s lives depend on your work.


Where can we find out more information about you?

SOLUtion WebsiteFacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn

Update: ADSHG charity members will have heard Julia’s exciting updates at our London AGM in July 2022, or even have met her in person when Julia travelled from Philadelphia to Ireland to present on the prototype auto-injector TwistJECT™ at our Dublin meeting in October 2022. Thank you to our members at the Dublin meeting, who as part of a focus group, gave their feedback on the prototype device to aid in its development. To read more on these updates, check out our News article.

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