Drug-polymer microparticles produced by supercritical assisted atomization.Biotechnol Bioeng. 2007 Aug 15; 97(6):1626-37.BB
The supercritical assisted atomization (SAA) was proposed as a new technique to produce composite microparticles for drug controlled release. Ampicillin trihydrate and chitosan were selected as model drug and carrier, respectively, and 1% v/v acetic acid aqueous solution was used as solvent. The effect of the polymer/drug ratio on particle morphology and drug release rate was evaluated. SEM analysis indicated that non-coalescing spherical microparticles formed by chitosan/ampicillin were produced by SAA. All coprecipitates produced have a sharp particle distribution, with diameters ranging between about 0.1 and 6 microm. SAA composite microparticles were characterized by X-ray, DSC, EDX and UV-vis analysis. A solid solution of the chitosan and ampicillin was produced and a stabilizing effect of the polymer on the drug has resulted that protects ampicillin from thermal degradation. A prolonged release from SAA coprecipitates with respect to raw drug and physical mixtures of chitosan and ampicillin was obtained; moreover, the polymer/drug ratio has revealed to be a controlling parameter for drug release. Drug release mechanisms characteristic of swelling-controlled systems were observed, with ampicillin release depending on both relaxation and diffusive mechanisms. An empirical binomial equation was used to describe experimental data, showing a fair good agreement with ampicillin release data if both the relaxational and the diffusional parameters are function of the polymer/drug ratio.