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J Pharm Pharmacol. 2006 Jul;58(7):887-94.

Formulations generated from ethanol-based proliposomes for delivery via medical nebulizers.

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Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmacy, University of London, 29-39 Brunswick Square, London, UK.


Multilamellar and oligolamellar liposomes were produced from ethanol-based soya phosphatidyl-choline proliposome formulations by addition of isotonic sodium chloride or sucrose solutions. The resultant liposomes entrapped up to 62% of available salbutamol sulfate compared with only 1.23% entrapped by conventionally prepared liposomes. Formulations were aerosolized using an air-jet nebulizer (Pari LC Plus) or a vibrating-mesh nebulizer (Aeroneb Pro small mesh, Aeroneb Pro large mesh, or Omron NE U22). All vibrating-mesh nebulizers produced aerosol droplets having larger volume median diameter (VMD) and narrower size distribution than the air-jet nebulizer. The choice of liposome dispersion medium had little effect on the performance of the Pari nebulizer. However, for the Aeroneb Pro small mesh and Omron NE U22, the use of sucrose solution tended to increase droplet VMD, and reduce aerosol mass and phospholipid outputs from the nebulizers. For the Aeroneb Pro large mesh, sucrose solution increased the VMD of nebulized droplets, increased phospholipid output and produced no effect on aerosol mass output. The Omron NE U22 nebulizer produced the highest mass output (approx. 100%) regardless of formulation, and the delivery rates were much higher for the NaCl-dispersed liposomes compared with sucrose-dispersed formulation. Nebulization produced considerable loss of entrapped drug from liposomes and this was accompanied by vesicle size reduction. Drug loss tended to be less for the vibrating-mesh nebulizers than the jet nebulizer. The large aperture size mesh (8 mum) Aeroneb Pro nebulizer increased the proportion of entrapped drug delivered to the lower stage of a twin impinger. This study has demonstrated that liposomes generated from proliposome formulations can be aerosolized in small droplets using air-jet or vibrating-mesh nebulizers. In contrast to the jet nebulizer, the performance of the vibrating-mesh nebulizers was greatly dependent on formulation. The high phospholipid output produced by the nebulizers employed suggests that both air-jet and vibrating-mesh nebulization may provide the potential of delivering liposome-entrapped or solubilized hydrophobic drugs to the airways.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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