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Int J Pharm. 2010 Oct 15;398(1-2):1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2010.07.026. Epub 2010 Jul 23.

Oral pulsatile delivery: rationale and chronopharmaceutical formulations.

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  • 1Universit√† degli Studi di Milano, Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche P. Pratesi, 20133 Milan, Italy.


Oral pulsatile/delayed delivery systems are designed to elicit programmable lag phases preceding a prompt and quantitative, repeated or prolonged release of drugs. Accordingly, they draw increasing interest because of the inherent suitability for accomplishing chronotherapeutic goals, which have recently been highlighted in connection with a number of widespread chronic diseases with typical night or early-morning recurrence of symptoms (e.g. bronchial asthma, cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, early-morning awakening). In addition, time-based colonic release can be attained when pulsatile delivery systems are properly adapted to overcome unpredictable gastric emptying and provide delay phases that would approximately match the small intestinal transit time. Oral pulsatile delivery is pursued by means of a variety of release platforms, namely reservoir, capsular and osmotic devices. The aim of the present review is to outline the rationale and main formulation strategies behind delayed-release dosage forms intended for the pharmacological treatment of chronopathologies.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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