global messaging alerts
main content area

Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the Invention of the K-1 Auto-Disabled Syringe

– Sterile and Safe Injection Breakthrough Has Saved More than 20 Million Lives –

Stamford, CT; May 6, 2024 — ApiJect Systems, Corp., a medical technology public-benefit corporation, congratulates Marc Koska, Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), ApiJect’s Co-Founder and Head of Product Design, on the 40th anniversary of his K-1 Auto-Disabled Syringe.

Since Mr. Koska invented the device in 1984, billons of K-1 Auto-Disabled Syringes have been used worldwide to deliver safe injections, most prominently in childhood vaccination campaigns. The K-1 Auto-Disable Syringe, which reduces the spread of bloodborne diseases by preventing syringe reuse, is credited with saving more than 20 million lives to date. It also helped lead to WHO policies that required all childhood vaccinations purchased through UNICEF to include auto-disable syringes.

The K-1 syringe was the first auto-disabled syringe that could be made on existing syringe manufacturing equipment, with only a small modification. This made it easier for syringe manufacturers to adopt without disrupting their operations. In addition, the K-1 required no additional training for the healthcare worker to use. Syringe reuse causes two problems that lead to the preventable spread of death and life-altering infections in millions of patients each year. First, a syringe used with a patient carrying HIV or Hepatitis B, for example, that is reinserted into a multidose vial to the draw the next dose can contaminate all the remaining doses in the vial. That means every other patient who receives an injection from that vial can be infected by whatever disease may have been carried by an earlier patient. Second, the reused syringe itself can be contaminated with the pathogen. K-1 Syringes – and all auto-disabled syringes – cannot be reused, helping to ensure the next patient receives an injection from a clean needle.

Mr. Koska has devoted his career to solving the problem of unsafe injections and has received honorary doctorates from Brighton University and the University of Sussex. Mr. Koska has received multiple awards, including The Economist’s Innovation Award, the Fogarty Institute for Innovation’s Tech Award, recognized as one of Investopedia’s 10 Most Successful Social Entrepreneurs and awarded the Order of the British Empire for his contribution to global healthcare.

Not one to rest on his laurels, today Mr. Koska is busy developing a range of new injection devices with ApiJect Systems that will make the safety and performance advantages of single-use prefilled syringes affordable and available for many more patients, saving even more lives.


ApiJect Systems, Corp. is a public-benefit medical technology company working to bring prefilled, single-dose injections to more people in every market around the world. The ApiJect Platform enables pharmaceutical and biotech companies to design scalable prefilled injectors and efficiently fill-finish them with their injectable drug products. This can be done either on one of their own ApiJect-licensed Blow-Fill-Seal packaging lines or at one of our world-class manufacturing partners.

Learn more at or contact Steve Hofman at [email protected].

Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial