Safety evaluation of poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid)/poly(lactic-acid) microspheres through intravitreal injection in rabbits
Xianfang Rong,1 Weien Yuan,2 Yi Lu,1 Xiaofen Mo1
1Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Science, Eye and ENT Hospital, Shanghai Medical College, Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China; 2School of Pharmacy, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China
Abstract: Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) and/or poly(lactic-acid) (PLA) microspheres are important drug delivery systems. This study investigated eye biocompatibility and safety of PLGA/PLA microspheres through intravitreal injection in rabbits. Normal New Zealand rabbits were randomly selected and received intravitreal administration of different doses (low, medium, or high) of PLGA/PLA microspheres and erythropoietin-loaded PLGA/PLA microspheres. The animals were clinically examined and sacrificed at 1, 2, 4, 8, and 12 weeks postadministration, and retinal tissues were prepared for analysis. Retinal reactions to the microspheres were evaluated by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end staining and glial fibrillary acidic protein immunohistochemistry. Retinal structure changes were assessed by hematoxylin and eosin staining and transmission electron microscopy. Finally, retinal function influences were explored by the electroretinography test. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end staining revealed no apoptotic cells in the injected retinas; immunohistochemistry did not detect any increased glial fibrillary acidic protein expression. Hematoxylin and eosin staining and transmission electron microscopy revealed no micro- or ultrastructure changes in the retinas at different time points postintravitreal injection. The electroretinography test showed no significant influence of scotopic or photopic amplitudes. The results demonstrated that PLGA/PLA microspheres did not cause retinal histological changes or functional damage and were biocompatible and safe enough for intravitreal injection in rabbits for controlled drug delivery.
Keywords: PLGA/PLA microspheres, intravitreal injection, posterior segment diseases, biocompatibility
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