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New inhalation-optimized itraconazole nanoparticle-based dry powders for the treatment of invasive pulmonary aspergillosis

Authors Duret C, Wauthoz N, Sebti T, Vanderbist F, Amighi K

Received 22 May 2012

Accepted for publication 20 July 2012

Published 18 October 2012 Volume 2012:7 Pages 5475—5489

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S34091

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Christophe Duret,1 Nathalie Wauthoz,1 Thami Sebti,2 Francis Vanderbist,2 Karim Amighi1

1Laboratoire de Pharmacie Galénique et de Biopharmacie, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium; 2SMB Laboratoires, Brussels, Belgium

Purpose: Itraconazole (ITZ) dry powders for inhalation (DPI) composed of nanoparticles (NP) embedded in carrier microparticles were prepared and characterized.
Methods: DPIs were initially produced by reducing the ITZ particle size to the nanometer range using high-pressure homogenization with tocopherol polyethylene 1000 succinate (TPGS, 10% w/w ITZ) as a stabilizer. The optimized nanosuspension and the initial microsuspension were then spray-dried with different proportions of or in the absence of mannitol and/or sodium taurocholate. DPI characterization was performed using scanning electron microscopy for morphology, laser diffraction to evaluate the size-reduction process, and the size of the dried NP when reconstituted in aqueous media, impaction studies using a multistage liquid impactor to determine the aerodynamic performance and fine-particle fraction that is theoretically able to reach the lung, and dissolution studies to determine the solubility of ITZ.
Results: Scanning electron microscopy micrographs showed that the DPI particles were composed of mannitol microparticles with embedded nano- or micro-ITZ crystals. The formulations prepared from the nanosuspension exhibited good flow properties and better fine-particle fractions, ranging from 46.2% ± 0.5% to 63.2% ± 1.7% compared to the 23.1% ± 0.3% that was observed with the formulation produced from the initial microsuspension. Spray-drying affected the NP size by inducing irreversible aggregation, which was able to be minimized by the addition of mannitol and sodium taurocholate before the drying procedure. The ITZ NP-based DPI considerably increased the ITZ solubility (58 ± 2 increased to 96 ± 1 ng/mL) compared with that of raw ITZ or an ITZ microparticle-based DPI (<10 ng/mL).
Conclusion: Embedding ITZ NP in inhalable microparticles is a very effective method to produce DPI formulations with optimal aerodynamic properties and enhanced ITZ solubility. These formulations could be applied to other poorly water-soluble drugs and could be a very effective alternative for treating invasive pulmonary aspergillosis.

Keywords: aspergillosis, spray-drying, homogenization, inhalation, saturation, solubility

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