Han Cong Seow, Qiuying Liao, Andy T Y Lau, Susan W S Leung, Shuofeng Yuan, Jenny K W Lam
Unpredictable outbreaks due to respiratory viral infections emphasize the need for new drug delivery strategies to the entire respiratory tract. As viral attack is not limited to a specific anatomic region, antiviral therapy that targets both the upper and lower respiratory tract would be most effective. This study aimed to formulate tamibarotene, a retinoid derivative previously reported to display broad-spectrum antiviral activity against influenza and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), as a novel dual particle size powder formulation that targets both the nasal cavity and the lung by a single route of intranasal administration. Spray freeze drying (SFD) and spray drying (SD) techniques were employed to prepare tamibarotene powder formulations, and cyclodextrin was used as the sole excipient to enhance drug solubility. With the employment of appropriate atomizing nozzles, particles of size above 10 μm and below 5 μm could be produced for nasal and lung deposition, respectively. The aerosol performance of the powder was evaluated using Next Generation Impactor (NGI) coupled with a glass expansion chamber and the powder was dispersed with a nasal powder device. By blending powder of two different particle sizes, a single powder formulation with dual aerosol deposition characteristic in both the nasal and pulmonary regions was produced. The aerosol deposition fractions in the nasal cavity and pulmonary region could be modulated by varying the powder mixing ratio. All dry powder formulations exhibited spherical structures, amorphous characteristics and improved dissolution profile as compared to the unformulated tamibarotene. Overall, a novel dual targeting powder formulation of tamibarotene exhibiting customizable aerosol deposition profile was developed. This exceptional formulation strategy can be adopted to deliver other antimicrobial agents to the upper and lower airways for the prevention and treatment of human respiratory infections.
Antiviral agent; COVID-19; Dry powder aerosol; Intranasal delivery; Pulmonary delivery; Spray drying; Spray freeze drying