Formulation and optimization of sildenafil citrate-loaded PLGA large porous microparticles using spray freeze-drying technique: A factorial design and in-vivo pharmacokinetic study

Formulation and optimization of sildenafil citrate-loaded PLGA large porous microparticles using spray freeze-drying technique: A factorial design and in-vivo pharmacokinetic study

Hend Shahin, Bhavani Prasad Vinjamuri, Azza A.Mahmoud, Suzan M.Mansour, Mahavir Bhupal Chougule, Lipika Chablani

Abstract

The oral administration of sildenafil citrate (SC) for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension is associated with several drawbacks. The study aimed to design and formulate SC-loaded inhalable poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) [PLGA] large porous microparticles (LPMs) for pulmonary delivery. A factorial design was used to study the effect of the composition of LPMs on physicochemical properties. The study also evaluated the effect of glucose and L-leucine concentration on the formulation. The developed LPMs demonstrated an acceptable yield% (≤48%), large geometric particle size (>5µm) with a spherical and porous surface, and sustained drug release (up to 48 h). Increasing the concentration of poly(ethyleneimine) from 0.5% to 1% in SC-loaded LPMs led to an increase in entrapment efficiency from ~3.02% to ~94.48%. The optimum LPMs showed adequate aerodynamic properties with a 97.68 ± 1.07% recovery, 25.33 ± 3.32% fine particle fraction, and low cytotoxicity. Intratracheal administration of LPMs demonstrated significantly higher lung deposition, systemic bioavailability, and longer retention time (p < 0.05) compared to orally administered Viagra® tablets. The study concluded that SC-loaded LPMs could provide better therapeutic efficacy, reduced dosing frequency, and enhanced patient compliance.

Keywords

Sildenafil citrate, Large porous microparticles, Spray-freeze drying, Pulmonary arterial hypertension, Pulmonary drug delivery, Inhalable dry powder, Design of experiment

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