Inhaled Oxytocin Project

Making childbirth safer for mothers everywhere

  • Mortality rate

    Every year over 300,000 women die during pregnancy or childbirth.

  • Shelf-life

    Inhaled Oxytocin prototype product has an approved 36 month shelf-life outside of the refrigerator

  • Partnerships

    Clinical and delivery partners, including two major multinational companies and the Saving Lives at Birth program

Severe bleeding after birth, known as postpartum haemorrhage, is the leading cause of maternal mortality which occurs overwhelmingly in low- and middle-income countries, due in part to poor access to quality oxytocin.

As oxytocin currently exists as an injection that requires refrigeration, women in resource-poor settings have limited access. This form of application is also impractical and dangerous.

The Inhaled Oxytocin Project, led by Professor Michelle McIntosh from the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, partners with two large multinational pharmaceutical companies to address the issue: Janssen Pharmaceutica N.V. and GlaxoSmithKline. Their goal is to make childbirth safe for women everywhere by developing an inhaled form of oxytocin that is heat stable, non-invasive and simple to use, as well as creating a product that reliably delivers the required dose of oxytocin independent of storage conditions.

As the Inhaled Oxytocin Project strives to make a global impact, researchers spend a considerable time engaging with local stakeholders to understand the political, cultural and socioeconomic factors influencing the project.

Read more about the framework behind this research

Other mission-oriented research