Nanostructured Microspheres Produced by Supercritical Fluids Extraction
|A recent paper addresses two major challenges in drug formulation: drug solubility and sustained release for greater therapeutic effectiveness, reduction of side effects, and improvement of patient’s comfort and compliance.|
A review by Dr. Carl D. Saquing, North Carolina State University
- G. Della Porta and E. Reverchon, “Nanostructured Microspheres Produced by Supercritical Fluid Extraction of Emulsions,” Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Vol. 100, No. 5, August 1, 2008. DOI: 10.1002/bit.21845
This paper demonstrates the effective generation of nanostructured polymer/drug composite microspheres by supercritical fluid extraction of emulsion (SFEE)-- a technique based on the use of supercritical fluids. SFEE is akin to the conventional technique of particle formation in emulsions. However, the removal of the internal organic or oil phase containing the water-insoluble drug from the emulsion droplets is achieved neither by solvent extraction, evaporation, or diffusion, but by extraction using supercritical carbon dioxide. A schematic of the process is shown in Figures 1 and 2.
This work examined the successful leveraging of the flexibility of particle engineering using an emulsion system with the efficiency of supercritical processing to overcome the hurdles of high residual solvent content in the product, long processing times, and mass transfer limitations inherent with the emulsion/evaporation procedure. It has the potential for scale up with a continuous process for commercial production based on nanotechnology; however, the translation to other polymer/drug systems while maintaining stable emulsions as well as the economic implications of the use of high pressure equipment for long term commercial viability need further investigation.
Images from G. Della Porta and E. Reverchon, “Nanostructured Microspheres Produced by Supercritical Fluid Extraction of Emulsions,” Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Vol. 100, No. 5, August 1, 2008. Reprinted with permission (contract pending).
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.