The conventional powder flow testers require sample volumes larger than 40g and are met with experimental hiccups due to powder cohesion. This study designed a gas-pressurized dispersive powder flow tester where a high velocity air is used to disaggregate powder (9g) and eliminate its cohesion. The pressurized gas entrained solid particles leaving an orifice where the distance, surface area, width and weight of particle dispersion thereafter are determined as flow index. The flow indices of seven lactose grades with varying size, size distribution, shape, morphology, bulk and tapped densities characteristics were examined. They were compared against Hausner ratio and Carr's index parameters of the same powder mass. Both distance and surface area attributes of particle dispersion had significant negative correlations with Hausner ratio and Carr's index values of lactose. The distance, surface area and ease of particle dispersion varied proportionately with circular equivalent, surface weighted mean and volume weighted mean diameters of lactose, and inversely related to their specific surface area and elongation characteristics. Unlike insensitive Hausner ratio and Carr's index, an increase in elongation property of lactose particles was detectable through reduced powder weight loss from gas-pressurized dispersion as a result of susceptible particle blockage at orifice. The gas-pressurized dispersive tester is a useful alternative flowability measurement device for low volume and cohesive powder.
In our previous study, a novel alginate-based bilayer film for slow-release wound dressings was successfully developed. We found that alginate alone yielded poor films; however, the addition of gelatine had significantly enhanced the drug dispersion as well as the physical properties. Here, an investigation of the drug-polymer interactions in the bilayer films was carried out. Drug content uniformity test and microscopy observation revealed that the addition of gelatine generated bilayer films with a homogenous drug distribution within the matrix. The FTIR and XRD data showed an increase in film crystallinity which might infer the presence of drug-polymer crystalline microaggregates in the films. DSC confirmed the drug-polymer interaction and indicated that the gelatine has no effect on the thermal behaviour of the microaggregates, suggesting the compatibility of the drug and excipients in the bilayer films. In conclusion, the addition of gelatine can promote homogenous dispersion of hydrophobic drugs in alginate films possibly through the formation of crystalline microaggregates.
The present study investigated the anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities of novel aspirin oil-in-water (O/W) nanoemulsion and water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) nano multiple emulsion formulations generated using ultrasound cavitation techniques. The anti-inflammatory activities of nanoemulsion and nano multiple emulsion were determined using the λ-carrageenan-induced paw edema model. The analgesic activities of both nanoformulations were determined using acetic acid-induced writhing response and hot plate assay. For comparison, the effect of pretreatment with blank nanoemulsion and reference aspirin suspension were also studied for their anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive activities. The results showed that oral administration of nanoemulsion and nano multiple emulsion containing aspirin (60 mg/kg) significantly reduced paw edema induced by λ-carrageenan injection. Both nanoformulations decreased the number of abdominal constriction in acetic acid-induced writhing model. Pretreatment with nanoformulations led to a significant increase in reaction time in hot plate assay. Nanoemulsion demonstrated an enhanced anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects compared to reference suspension while nano multiple emulsion exhibited a mild inhibitory effects in the three experimental animal model tests. The results obtained for nano multiple emulsion were relatively lower than reference. However, administration of blank nanoemulsion did not alter the nociceptive response significantly though it showed slight anti-inflammatory effect. These experimental studies suggest that nanoemulsion and nano multiple emulsion produced a pronounced anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects in rats and may be candidates as new nanocarriers for pharmacological NSAIDs in the treatment of inflammatory disorders and alleviating pains.
Conventional melt pelletization and granulation processes produce round and dense, and irregularly shaped but porous agglomerates respectively. This study aimed to design centrifugal air-assisted melt agglomeration technology for manufacture of spherical and yet porous "granulets" for ease of downstream manufacturing and enhancing drug release. A bladeless agglomerator, which utilized shear-free air stream to mass the powder mixture of lactose filler, polyethylene glycol binder and poorly water-soluble tolbutamide drug into "granulets", was developed. The inclination angle and number of vane, air-impermeable surface area of air guide, processing temperature, binder content and molecular weight were investigated with reference to "granulet" size, shape, texture and drug release properties. Unlike fluid-bed melt agglomeration with vertical processing air flow, the air stream in the present technology moved centrifugally to roll the processing mass into spherical but porous "granulets" with a drug release propensity higher than physical powder mixture, unprocessed drug and dense pellets prepared using high shear mixer. The fast-release attribute of "granulets" was ascribed to porous matrix formed with a high level of polyethylene glycol as solubilizer. The agglomeration and drug release outcomes of centrifugal air-assisted technology are unmet by the existing high shear and fluid-bed melt agglomeration techniques.
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.
In this study, the preparation of N-pamitoyl chitosan (ChP) anchored oleic acid (OA) liposome was demonstrated. Two different types of water-soluble ChPs with different degrees of acylation (DA) were selected for this study. The presence of ChPs on the surface of OA liposome was confirmed with their micrographs and physicochemical properties. The "peeling off" effect on the surface of the ChP-anchored OA (OAChP) liposomes was observed on the atomic force microscope micrographs and confirmed the presence of the ChPs layer on the liposome surface. The surface tension of the OAChPs liposome solution was found to be higher than that of the OA liposome solution. This result indicated the removal of OA monomer by ChPs from the air-water interface. The increase in the minimum area per headgroup (A(min)) of the OA with the presence of ChPs has further proved the interaction between OA monomer and the hydrophobic moieties of the ChPs. The ChPs anchored onto the OA monolayer increased the curvature of the OAChP liposomes monolayer and reduced the liposome size. The size of the OAChP liposomes was reduced by 30 nm as compared with the unmodified OA liposome. Results revealed that the anchored ChPs can improve the integrity and rigidity of the OA liposome.
In this study, hydroxytyrosol (HT; a potent antioxidant) was co-administered with hydrocortisone (HC) to mitigate the systemic adverse effects of the latter and to provide additional anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits in the treatment of atopic dermatitis (AD). The co-loaded nanoparticles (NPs) prepared had shown different particle sizes, zeta potentials, loading efficiencies, and morphology, when the pH of the chitosan solution was increased from 3.0 to 7.0. Ex vivo permeation data showed that the co-loaded NPs formulation significantly reduced the corresponding flux (17.04μg/cm(2)/h) and permeation coefficient (3.4×10(-3)cm/h) of HC across full-thickness NC/Nga mouse skin. In addition, the NPs formulation showed higher epidermal (1560±31μg/g of skin) and dermal (880±28μg/g of skin) accumulation of HC than did a commercial HC formulation. Moreover, an in vivo study using an NC/Nga mouse model revealed that compared to the other treatment groups, the group treated with the NPs formulation efficiently controlled transepidermal water loss (13±2g/m(2)/h), intensity of erythema (207±12), and dermatitis index (mild). In conclusion, NPs co-loaded with HC/HT is proposed as a promising system for the percutaneous co-delivery of anti-inflammatory and antioxidative agents in the treatment of AD.
The influx of medicines from different sources into healthcare systems of developing countries presents a challenge to monitor their origin and quality. The absence of a repository of reference samples or spectra prevents the analysis of tablets by direct comparison. A set of paracetamol tablets purchased in Malaysian pharmacies were compared to a similar set of sample purchased in the UK using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Additional samples of products containing ibuprofen or paracetamol in combination with other actives were added to the study as negative controls. NIR spectra of the samples were acquired and compared by using multivariate modeling and classification algorithms (PCA/SIMCA) and stored in a spectral database. All analysed paracetamol samples contained the purported active ingredient with only 1 out of 20 batches excluded from the 95% confidence interval, while the negative controls were clearly classified as outliers of the set. Although the substandard products were not detected in the purchased sample set, our results indicated variability in the quality of the Malaysian tablets. A database of spectra was created and search methods were evaluated for correct identification of tablets. The approach presented here can be further developed as a method for identifying substandard pharmaceutical products.
This study investigated critical physicochemical attributes of low (LV), medium (MV) and high molecular weight (HV) sodium carboxymethylcellulose (SCMC) scaffolds in partial thickness wound healing. SCMC scaffolds were prepared by solvent-evaporation technique. Their in vitro erosion, moisture affinity, morphology, tensile strength, polymer molecular weight and carboxymethyl substitution, and in vivo wound healing profiles were determined. Inferring from rat wound size, re-epithelialization and histological profiles, wound healing progressed with HV scaffold>LV-MV scaffold>control with no scaffold. The transepidermal water loss (TEWL) from wound of rats treated by control>HV scaffold>LV-MV scaffold. HV scaffold had the highest tensile strength of all matrices and was resistant to erosion in simulated wound fluid. In spite of constituting small nanopores, it afforded a substantial TEWL than MV and LV scaffolds from wound across an intact matrix through its low moisture affinity characteristics. The HV scaffold can protect moisture loss without its excessive accumulation at wound bed which hindered re-epithelialization process. Regulation of transepidermal water movement and wound healing by scaffolds was governed by SCMC molecular weight instead of its carboxymethyl substitution degree or matrix pore size distribution, with large molecular weight HV preferred over lower molecular weight samples.
In situ coating of 5-fluorouracil pellets by ethylcellulose and pectin powder mixture (8:3 weight ratio) in capsule at simulated gastrointestinal media provides colon-specific drug release in vitro. This study probes into pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic profiles of intra-capsular pellets coated in vivo in rats with reference to their site-specific drug release outcomes. The pellets were prepared by extrusion-spheronization technique. In vitro drug content, drug release, in vivo pharmacokinetics, local colonic drug content, tumor, aberrant crypt foci, systemic hematology and clinical chemistry profiles of coated and uncoated pellets were examined against unprocessed drug. In vivo pellet coating led to reduced drug bioavailability and enhanced drug accumulation at colon (179.13 μg 5-FU/g rat colon content vs 4.66 μg/g of conventional in vitro film-coated pellets at 15 mg/kg dose). The in vivo coated pellets reduced tumor number and size, through reforming tubular epithelium with basement membrane and restricting expression of cancer from adenoma to adenocarcinoma. Unlike uncoated pellets and unprocessed drug, the coated pellets eliminated aberrant crypt foci which represented a putative preneoplastic lesion in colon cancer. They did not inflict additional systemic toxicity. In vivo pellet coating to orally target 5-fluorouracil delivery at cancerous colon is a feasible therapeutic treatment approach.
The predilection of a bi-layered tablet to fail in the interface region after its initial formation in the compaction process reduces its practicality as a choice for controlled release solid drug delivery system. Hence, a fundamental appreciation of the governing mechanism that causes the weakening of the interfacial bonds within the bi-layered tablet is crucial in order to improve the overall bi-layered tablet mechanical integrity. This work has shown that the occurrence of the elastic relaxation in the interface region during the ejection stage of the compaction process decreases with the increase in the bi-layered tablet interface strength. This is believed to be due to the increase in the plastic bonding in the interface region. The tablet diametrical elastic relaxation affects the tablet height elastic relaxation, where the impediment of the tablet height expansion is observed when the interface region experiences a diametrical expansion.
The human small intestine, with its enormous absorptive surface area, is invariably the principal site of drug absorption. Hence, the residence time of a dosage form in this part of the gut can have a great influence on the absorption of the contained drug. Various methods have been employed to monitor the gastrointestinal transit of pharmaceutical dosage forms, but the use of gamma-scintigraphy has superceded all the other methods. However, careful consideration of the time interval for image acquisition and proper analysis of the scintigraphic data are important for obtaining reliable results. Most studies reported the mean small intestinal transit time of various dosage forms to be about 3-4h, being closely similar to that of food and water. The value does not appear to be influenced by their physical state nor the presence of food, but the timing of food intake following administration of the dosage forms can influence the small intestinal transit time. While the mean small intestinal transit time is quite consistent among dosage forms and studies, individual values can vary widely. There are differing opinions regarding the effect of density and size of dosage forms on their small intestinal transit properties. Some common excipients employed in pharmaceutical formulations can affect the small intestinal transit and drug absorption. There is currently a lack of studies regarding the effects of excipients, as well as the timing of food intake on the small intestinal transit of dosage forms and drug absorption.
To enhance the stability of the anticancer drug gemcitabine (2'-deoxy-2',2'-difluorocytidine), it was conjugated to poly-l-glutamic acid (PG-H) via a carbodiimide reaction. The synthesised poly-l-glutamic acid-gemcitabine (PG-G) was purified and characterised by using SDS-PAGE to estimate its molecular weight, HPLC to determine its purity and degree of drug loading, and NMR to elucidate the structure. In vitro aqueous hydrolytic studies showed that the gemcitabine release from the polymeric drug conjugate was pH dependent, and that the conjugation to PG-H improved its stability in human plasma. The release of the bound gemcitabine from PG-G in plasma was mediated by a hydrolytic process. It began with a lag phase, followed by linear release between 12 and 48h, and reached equilibrium at 72h with 51% of the gemcitabine released. In vitro cytotoxicity studies using MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 human mammary cancer cells, as well as human dermal fibroblasts (HDF), showed that PG-G displayed a lower dose dependent cytotoxic effect with respect to the parent drug gemcitabine. On the other hand, in 4T1 mouse mammary tumour cells, PG-G and gemcitabine showed similar toxicities. Gemcitabine was more than likely released hydrolytically from PG-G and taken up by MCF-7, MDA-MB-231 and HDF, whereas both released gemcitabine and PG-G were taken up by 4T1 to mediate the observed cytotoxicities. The improved stability and extended sustained release profile may render PG-G a potential anticancer prodrug.
The influence of optical parameters, additional techniques (e.g. PIDS technology) and the importance of light microscopy were investigated by comparing laser diffraction data obtained via the conventional method and an optimized analysis method. Also the influence of a possible dissolution of nanocrystals during a measurement on the size result obtained was assessed in this study. The results reveal that dissolution occurs if unsaturated medium or microparticle saturated medium is used for the measurements. The dissolution is erratic and the results are not reproducible. Dissolution can be overcome by saturating the measuring medium prior to the measurement. If nanocrystals are analysed the dispersion medium should be saturated with the nanocrystals, because the solubility is higher than for coarse micro-sized drug material. The importance of using the optimized analysis method was proven by analysing 40 different nanosuspensions via the conventional versus the optimized sizing method. There was no large difference in the results obtained for the 40 nanosuspensions using the conventional method. This would have led to the conclusion, that all the 40 formulations investigated are physically stable. However, the analysis via the optimized method revealed that from 40 formulations investigated only four were physically stable. In conclusion an optimized analysis saves time and money and avoids misleading developments, because discrimination between "stable" and "unstable" can be done reliably at a very early stage of the development.
Curcumin (CUR) has been formulated into a host of nano-sized formulations in a bid to improve its in vivo solubility, stability and bioavailability. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the encapsulation of CUR in nanocarriers would impede its biological interactivity, specifically its potential anti-cancer adjuvant activity via the modulation of CYP enzymes in vitro. NanoCUR, a micellar dispersion prepared via a thin film method using only Pluronic F127 as excipient, was amenable to lyophilization, and retained its nano-sized spherical dimensions (17-33 nm) upon reconstitution with water followed by dilution to 5 μM with HBSS or EMEM. NanoCUR was a weaker cytotoxic agent compared to CUR in solution (sCUR), affecting HepG2 cell viability only when the incubation time was prolonged from 4h to 48 h. Correlation with 2h uptake data suggests this was due to a lower cellular uptake rate of CUR from NanoCUR than from sCUR. The poorer CUR accessibility might also account for NanoCUR being a weaker inhibitor of CYP2C9 and CYP2D6 than sCUR. NanoCUR was, however, 1.76-fold more potent against the CYP3A4 (IC50 5.13 ± 0.91 μM) metabolic function. The higher activity against CYP3A4 might be attributed to the synergistic action of Pluronic F127, since the blank micellar dispersion also inhibited CYP3A4 activity. Both sCUR and NanoCUR had no effect on the CYP3A4 mRNA levels in the HepG2 cells. NanoCUR therefore, maintained most of the biological activities of CUR in vitro, albeit at a lower potency and response rate.
The interaction of tranilast (TRN), an antiallergic drug with the main drug transporter in human circulation, human serum albumin (HSA) was studied using isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), fluorescence spectroscopy and in silico docking methods. ITC data revealed the binding constant and stoichiometry of binding as (3.21 ± 0.23) × 10(6)M(-1) and 0.80 ± 0.08, respectively, at 25°C. The values of the standard enthalpy change (ΔH°) and the standard entropy change (ΔS°) for the interaction were found as -25.2 ± 5.1 kJ mol(-1) and 46.9 ± 5.4 J mol(-1)K(-1), respectively. Both thermodynamic data and modeling results suggested the involvement of hydrogen bonding, hydrophobic and van der Waals forces in the complex formation. Three-dimensional fluorescence data of TRN-HSA complex demonstrated significant changes in the microenvironment around the protein fluorophores upon drug binding. Competitive drug displacement results as well as modeling data concluded the preferred binding site of TRN as Sudlow's site I on HSA.
The objective of this study was to investigate the in-vivo behavior of topically applied cationic polymeric chitosan nanoparticles (CSNPs) loaded with anti-inflammatory (hydrocortisone, HC) and antimicrobial (hydroxytyrosol, HT) drugs, to elucidate their skin targeting potential for the treatment of atopic dermatitis (AD). Compared to the commercial formulation, the HC-HT loaded CSNPs showed significantly improved drug penetration into the epidermal and dermal layers of albino Wistar rat skin without saturation. Dermal pharmacokinetic of CSNPs with a size of 228.5±7nm and +39±5mV charges revealed that they penetrated 2.46-fold deeper than the commercial formulation did, and had greater affinity at the skin target site without spreading to the surrounding tissues, thereby providing substantial safety benefits. In repeated dermal application toxicity studies, the HC-HT CSNPs showed no evidence of toxicity compared to the commercial formulation, which induced skin atrophy and higher liver enzyme levels. In conclusion, the positively charged HC-HT CSNP formulation exhibited promising local delivery and virtually no treatment-related toxicities, suggesting it may be an efficient and viable alternative for commercially available AD treatments.
Poly(d,l-lactic acid) biodegradable microspheres, loaded with the drugs cisplatin and/or sorafenib tosylate, were prepared, characterized and studied. Degradation of the microspheres, and release of cisplatin and/or sorafenib tosylate from them, were investigated in detail. Incubation of the drug-carrying microspheres in phosphate buffered saline (pH=7.4) revealed slow degradation. Nevertheless, significant release of cisplatin and sorafenib tosylate from microspheres loaded with both drugs was apparent in vitro; this can be attributed to their porous structure. Supernatants from microspheres loaded with both drugs showed strong toxic effects on cells (i.e. endothelial cells, fibroblast cells and Renca tumor cells) and potent anti-angiogenic effect in the matrigel endothelial tube assay. In vivo anti-tumor effects of the microspheres were also observed, in a Renca tumor mouse model. The poly(d,l-lactic acid) microspheres containing both cisplatin and sorafenib tosylate revealed highest therapeutic efficacy, probably demonstrating that combined local administration of cisplatin and sorafenib tosylate synergistically inhibits tumor growth in situ. In conclusion, this study demonstrates the applicability of biodegradable poly(d,l-lactic acid) microspheres loaded with cisplatin and sorafenib tosylate for local drug delivery as well as the potential of these microspheres for future use in transarterial chemoembolization.
Genipin, a natural and non-toxic cross linker, was used to prepare cross linked floating kappa carrageenan/sodium carboxymethyl cellulose hydrogels and the effect of genipin on hydrogels characterization was investigated. Calcium carbonates were employed as gas forming agents. Ranitidine hydrochloride was used as drug. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) were carried out to study the changes in the characteristics of hydrogels. Furthermore, scanning electron microscope (SEM) was performed to study microstructure of hydrogels. The result showed that all formulated hydrogels had excellent floating behavior. It was discovered that the cross linking reaction showed significant effect on gel strength, porosity and swelling ratio compared to non-cross linked hydrogels. It was found that the drug release was slower and lesser after being cross linked. Microstructure study shows that cross linked hydrogels exhibited hard and rough surface. Therefore, genipin can be an interesting cross linking agent for controlled drug delivery in gastrointestinal tract.
Topical chemotherapy is the application of cancer drugs directly onto the skin, which has become a standard treatment for basal cell carcinoma. Due to the promising results in the treatment of skin cancer, topical chemotherapy has recently been applied to breast cancer patients because some breast cancer tissues are only superficial. Hydroxytyrosol, a phenolic compound from olives that is present in high amounts in Hidrox(®) olive extract, has been shown to have a protective effect on normal cells and selective antitumor activities on cancerous cells. The aims of the present study were to develop an alginate bilayer film containing Hidrox(®) and to investigate its potential use as a topical chemotherapeutic agent. Alginate films were characterized for swelling and for physical, thermal, rheological, and mechanical properties. Drug content uniformity and in vitro drug release tests were also investigated. The alginate bilayer films containing Hidrox(®), HB2, showed controlled release of hydroxytyrosol at a flux of 0.094±0.009 mg/cm(2)/h. The results of the cytotoxic assay showed that the HB2 films were dose-dependent and could significantly reduce the growth of breast cancer cells (MCF-7) at 150 μg/mL for a cell viability of 29.34±4.64%. In conclusion, an alginate bilayer film containing Hidrox(®) can be a potential alternative for topical chemotherapeutic agent for skin and breast cancer treatment.