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Triamcinolone acetonide-loaded PLA/PEG-PDL microparticles for effective intra-articular delivery: synthesis, optimization, in vitro and in vivo evaluation

Abou-ElNour, May, Ishak, Rania A.H., Tiboni, Mattia, Bonacucina, Giulia, Cespi, Marco, Casettari, Luca, Soliman, Mahmoud E., Geneidi, Ahmed S.
Journal of controlled release 2019 v.309 pp. 125-144
X-ray diffraction, computer software, delta-decalactone, differential scanning calorimetry, emulsions, evaporation, fossil fuels, histopathology, in vivo studies, inflammation, infrared spectroscopy, microparticles, molecular weight, polymers, rats, rheumatoid arthritis, scanning electron microscopes, solubility, solvents, therapeutics, triamcinolone
Nowadays the use of sustainable polymers as poly-lactic acid (PLA) and poly-δ-decalactone (PDL) in drug delivery is advantageous compared to polymers derived from fossil fuels. The present work aimed to produce microparticles (MPs) derived from novel sustainable polymers, loaded with triamcinolone acetonide (TA) for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis via intra-articular (IA) delivery. PDL was synthesized from green δ-decalactone monomers and co-polymerized with methoxy-polyethylene glycol (mPEG) forming PEG-PDL with different molecular weights. The Hansen's solubility parameters were applied to select the most compatible polymer with the drug. An o/w emulsion/solvent evaporation technique was used for MPs fabrication, using 3 [3] full factorial design. Selection of the optimized MPs was performed using Expert Design® software's desirability function. The optimized formulations were characterized using scanning electron microscope, powder X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry, infrared spectroscopy and in vitro release studies. The inhibition percents of inflammation and histopathological studies were assessed in complete Freund's adjuvant-induced rats' knee joints evaluating the effect of IA injections of selected MPs compared to the free drug suspension. Solubility studies revealed high compatibility and miscibility between TA and PEG-PDL1700, which was blended with PLA for convenient MPs formation. The in vitro characterization studies confirmed the formation of drug-copolymer co-crystals. The in vivo studies ensured the superiority of the newly designed composite MPs in inflammation suppression, compared to the free drug suspension and PLA MPs as well. The present study proved the advantage of using sustainable polymers in a novel combination for effective drug delivery and suggesting its usefulness in designing versatile platforms for therapeutic applications.