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Curr Drug Deliv. 2019;16(6):500-510. doi: 10.2174/1567201816666190627143214.

In Vitro and In Vivo Evaluation of Olmesartan Medoxomil Microcrysta ls and Nanocrystals: Preparation, Characterization, and Pharmacokinet ic Comparison in Beagle Dogs.

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School of Wuya, Shenyang Pharmaceutical University, Shenyang City, Liaoning Province, 110016, China.
School of Pharmacy, Shenyang Pharmaceutical University, Shenyang City, Liaoning Province, 110016, China.



Olmesartan medoxomil (OLM) is a promising prodrug hydrolyzed to olmesartan (OL) during absorption from the gastrointestinal tract. OL is a selective angiotensin II receptor antagonist, with high drug resistance and low drug interaction. However, OLM has low solubility and low bioavailability. Therefore, it is extremely urgent to reduce the drug particle size to improve its biological bioavailability.


The aim of the study was to improve the oral bioavailability of poorly water-soluble olmesartan medoxomil (OLM) by using different particle size-reduction strategies.


Raw drug material was micronized or nanosized by either jet or wet milling processes, respectively. The particle sizes of the prepared nanocrystals (100-300 nm) and microcrystals (0.5-16 μm) were characterized by DLS, SEM, and TEM techniques. Solid state characterization by XPRD and DSC was used to confirm the crystalline state of OLM after the milling processes.


We demonstrated that OLM nanocrystals enhanced solubility and dissolution in the non-sink condition in which high sensitivity was found in purified water. After 1 h, 65.4% of OLM was dissolved from nanocrystals, while microcrystals and OLMETEC® only showed 37.8% and 31.9% of drug dissolution, respectively. In the pharmacokinetic study using Beagle dogs, an increase in Cmax (~2 fold) and AUC (~1.6 fold) was observed after oral administration of OLM nanocrystals when compared to microcrystals and reference tablets, OLMETEC®. In contrast, OLM microcrystals failed to improve the oral bioavailability of the drugs.


Particles size reduction to nano-scale by means of nanocrystals technology significantly increased in vitro dissolution rate and in vivo oral bioavailability of OLM.


Olmesartan medoxomil (OLM); bioavailability; gastrointestinal tract; microcrystals; nanocrystals; particle size reduction.

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