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In vivo evaluation of a conjugated poly(lactide-ethylene glycol) nanoparticle depot formulation for prolonged insulin delivery in the diabetic rabbit model

Authors Tomar L, Tyagi C, Kumar M, Kumar P, Singh H, Choonara YE, Pillay V

Received 12 September 2012

Accepted for publication 22 October 2012

Published 4 February 2013 Volume 2013:8(1) Pages 505—520


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Lomas Tomar,1,2 Charu Tyagi,1,3 Manoj Kumar,2 Pradeep Kumar,1 Harpal Singh,2 Yahya E Choonara,1 Viness Pillay1

1University of the Witwatersrand, Faculty of Health Sciences, Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa; 2Centre for Biomedical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, India; 3VSPG College, Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut, India

Abstract: Poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and polylactic acid (PLA)-based copolymeric nanoparticles were synthesized and investigated as a carrier for prolonged delivery of insulin via the parenteral route. Insulin loading was simultaneously achieved with particle synthesis using a double emulsion solvent evaporation technique, and the effect of varied PEG chain lengths on particle size and insulin loading efficiency was determined. The synthesized copolymer and nanoparticles were analyzed by standard polymer characterization techniques of gel permeation chromatography, dynamic light scattering, nuclear magnetic resonance, and transmission electron microscopy. In vitro insulin release studies performed under simulated conditions provided a near zero-order release pattern up to 10 days. In vivo animal studies were undertaken with varied insulin loads of nanoparticles administered subcutaneously to fed diabetic rabbits and, of all doses administered, nanoparticles containing 50 IU of insulin load per kg body weight controlled the blood glucose level within the physiologically normal range of 90–140 mg/dL, and had a prolonged effect for more than 7 days. Histopathological evaluation of tissue samples from the site of injection showed no signs of inflammation or aggregation, and established the nontoxic nature of the prepared copolymeric nanoparticles. Further, the reaction profiles for PLA-COOH and NH2-PEGDA-NH2 were elucidated using molecular mechanics energy relationships in vacuum and in a solvated system by exploring the spatial disposition of various concentrations of polymers with respect to each other. Incorporation of insulin within the polymeric matrix was modeled using Connolly molecular surfaces. The computational results corroborated the experimental and analytical data. The ability to control blood glucose levels effectively coupled with the nontoxic behavior of the nanoparticles indicates that these nanoparticles are a potential candidate for insulin delivery.

Keywords: parenteral delivery, insulin, nanoparticles, poly(lactide-ethylene glycol) diblock copolymer, molecular mechanics energy relationship

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