The aims of this research were to develop a novel bilayer hydrocolloid film based on alginate and to investigate its potential as slow-release wound healing vehicle. The bilayer is composed of an upper layer impregnated with model drug (ibuprofen) and a drug-free lower layer, which acted as a rate-controlling membrane. The thickness uniformity, solvent loss, moisture vapour transmission rate (MVTR), hydration rate, morphology, rheology, mechanical properties, in vitro drug release and in vivo wound healing profiles were investigated. A smooth bilayer film with two homogenous distinct layers was produced. The characterisation results showed that bilayer has superior mechanical and rheological properties than the single layer films. The bilayers also showed low MVTR, slower hydration rate and lower drug flux in vitro compared to single layer inferring that bilayer may be useful for treating low suppurating wounds and suitable for slow release application on wound surfaces. The bilayers also provided a significant higher healing rate in vivo, with well-formed epidermis with faster granulation tissue formation when compared to the controls. In conclusions, a novel alginate-based bilayer hydrocolloid film was developed and results suggested that they can be exploited as slow-release wound dressings.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.