Preparation and Functional Evaluation of Electrospun Polymeric Nanofibers as a New System for Sustained Topical Ocular Delivery of Itraconazole
Due to the rapid clearance of external agents from the surface of the cornea, conventional ocular formulations usually require frequent and long duration of administration to achieve a therapeutic level of the drug on the cornea which can be conquered using prolonged-release nanofibrous inserts. In the present study, for the first time, polymeric nanofibers of itraconazole (ITZ), a potent triazole antifungal agent, were prepared as ocular inserts to enhance the topical ocular delivery of the drug.
Three different nanofibers were prepared by electrospinning using polyvinyl alcohol-cellulose acetate and polycaprolactone-polyethylene glycol 12,000 polymeric blends. Nanofibers indicated uniform structures with the mean diameter ranging between 137-180 nm. Differential scanning calorimetry and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy confirmed the amorphous state of the drug in the formulations and the no drug-polymer interaction. Appropriate stability, suitable flexibility, and 2.2-3.9 MPa tensile strength were observed.
Formulations indicated antifungal efficacy against Candida albicans and Aspergillus fumigatus and cell viability >70% at different concentrations. Results of bioassay against Candida albicans exhibited prolonged in vitro release of 50-70% of ITZ for almost 55 days. The results suggested that the nanofibers could be considered suitable for prolonged delivery of the ITZ as an antifungal requiring frequent and long duration of administration.
Article information: (2021) Preparation and Functional Evaluation of Electrospun Polymeric Nanofibers as a New System for Sustained Topical Ocular Delivery of Itraconazole, Pharmaceutical Development and Technology,