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Novel self-assembled nano-tubular mixed micelles of Pluronics P123, Pluronic F127 and phosphatidylcholine for oral delivery of nimodipine: In vitro characterization, ex vivo transport and in vivo pharmacokinetic studies.

International journal of pharmaceutics (2015-08-05)
Emad B Basalious, Rehab N Shamma
ABSTRACT

Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is a major cause of death in patients suffering from stroke. Nimodipine (NM) is the only FDA-approved drug for treating SAH-induced vasospasm. However, NM suffers from poor oral bioavailability (5-13%) due to its low aqueous solubility, extensive first pass metabolism and short elimination half-life (1-2h). The objective of this study was to develop NM-loaded Pluronic/phosphatidylcholine/polysorbate 80 mixed micelles (PPPMM) that can solubilize NM in aqueous media even after dilution, prolong its circulation time, improve its bioavailability and eventually help in targeting it to the brain tissue. PPPMM formulations were prepared using the thin film hydration technique, and evaluated for drug payload, solubilization efficiency (SE), micellar size, zeta potential, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and ex vivo transport through rat intestine. The selected NM-loaded PPPMM, containing PC to Pluronics(®) molar ratio of 75:25, showed a drug payload, SE, micellar size and zeta potential of 1.06 ± 0.03 mg/mL, 99.2 ± 2.01%, 571.5 ± 11.87 nm and -31.2 ± 0.06 mv, respectively. The selected formulation had a much larger hydrophobic core volume for solubilization of NM and exhibited the highest NM transport. TEM micrographs illustrated the formation of highly flexible nano-tubular mixed micelles (NTMM). The in vivo pharmacokinetic study showed greater bioavailability of NM in plasma (232%) and brain (208%) of rats from NM-loaded PPPMM compared to that of the drug solution due to the efficiency of flexible NTMM to enhance absorption of NM from the intestinal mucosa. The significant increase in drug solubility, enhanced drug absorption and the long circulation time of the NTMM could be promising to improve oral and parenteral delivery of NM.

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