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Pharmaceutics, Volume 13, Issue 9 (September 2021) – 205 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Among the emerging strategies in the treatment of cancer, stimuli-responsive smart drug delivery systems have attracted attention because of the efficient delivery of the payload at the target site without harming the healthy tissues and simultaneously coping with chemoresistance due to subtherapeutic drug exposures. Apart from their salient features, liposomes and mesoporous silica nanoparticles individually exhibit certain drawbacks, but a combined approach ends up being a success. The gatekeeping effect of lipid coat not only plays an important role in the stability of nanocarriers but also enhances the cellular uptake. Ultrasound responsive conversion of liquid to gas result in lipid layer rupture and ultimately triggers drug release from porous structures. View this paper.
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Review
Optimizing Spray-Dried Porous Particles for High Dose Delivery with a Portable Dry Powder Inhaler
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1528; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091528 - 21 Sep 2021
Viewed by 496
Abstract
This manuscript critically reviews the design and delivery of spray-dried particles for the achievement of high total lung doses (TLD) with a portable dry powder inhaler. We introduce a new metric termed the product density, which is simply the [...] Read more.
This manuscript critically reviews the design and delivery of spray-dried particles for the achievement of high total lung doses (TLD) with a portable dry powder inhaler. We introduce a new metric termed the product density, which is simply the TLD of a drug divided by the volume of the receptacle it is contained within. The product density is given by the product of three terms: the packing density (the mass of powder divided by the volume of the receptacle), the drug loading (the mass of drug divided by the mass of powder), and the aerosol performance (the TLD divided by the mass of drug). This manuscript discusses strategies for maximizing each of these terms. Spray drying at low drying rates with small amounts of a shell-forming excipient (low Peclet number) leads to the formation of higher density particles with high packing densities. This enables ultrahigh TLD (>100 mg of drug) to be achieved from a single receptacle. The emptying of powder from capsules is directly proportional to the mass of powder in the receptacle, requiring an inhaled volume of about 1 L for fill masses between 40 and 50 mg and up to 3.2 L for a fill mass of 150 mg. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inhaled Treatment of Respiratory Infections)
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Article
Multifunctional Nanofibrous Dressing with Antimicrobial and Anti-Inflammatory Properties Prepared by Needle-Free Electrospinning
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1527; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091527 - 21 Sep 2021
Viewed by 584
Abstract
An active wound dressing should address the main goals in wound treatment, which are improved wound healing and reduced infection rates. We developed novel multifunctional nanofibrous wound dressings with three active ingredients: chloramphenicol (CAM), beta-glucan (βG) and chitosan (CHI), of which βG and [...] Read more.
An active wound dressing should address the main goals in wound treatment, which are improved wound healing and reduced infection rates. We developed novel multifunctional nanofibrous wound dressings with three active ingredients: chloramphenicol (CAM), beta-glucan (βG) and chitosan (CHI), of which βG and CHI are active nanofiber-forming biopolymers isolated from the cell walls of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and from shrimp shells, respectively. To evaluate the effect of each active ingredient on the nanofibers’ morphological features and bioactivity, nanofibers with both βG and CHI, only βG, only CHI and only copolymers, polyethylene oxide (PEO) and hydroxypropylmethylcellulose (HPMC) were fabricated. All four nanofiber formulations were also prepared with 1% CAM. The needle-free NanospiderTM technique allowed for the successful production of defect-free nanofibers containing all three active ingredients. The CAM-containing nanofibers had a burst CAM-release and a high absorption capacity. Nanofibers with all active ingredients (βG, CHI and CAM) showed a concentration-dependent anti-inflammatory activity, while maintaining the antimicrobial activity of CAM. The promising anti-inflammatory properties, together with the high absorption capacity and antimicrobial effect, make these multifunctional nanofibers promising as dressings in local treatment of infected and exuding wounds, such as burn wounds. Full article
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Article
Endothelial-Derived Extracellular Vesicles Induce Cerebrovascular Dysfunction in Inflammation
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1525; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091525 - 21 Sep 2021
Viewed by 769
Abstract
Blood–brain barrier (BBB) dysfunction is a key hallmark in the pathology of many neuroinflammatory disorders. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are lipid membrane-enclosed carriers of molecular cargo that are involved in cell-to-cell communication. Circulating endothelial EVs are increased in the plasma of patients with neurological [...] Read more.
Blood–brain barrier (BBB) dysfunction is a key hallmark in the pathology of many neuroinflammatory disorders. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are lipid membrane-enclosed carriers of molecular cargo that are involved in cell-to-cell communication. Circulating endothelial EVs are increased in the plasma of patients with neurological disorders, and immune cell-derived EVs are known to modulate cerebrovascular functions. However, little is known about whether brain endothelial cell (BEC)-derived EVs themselves contribute to BBB dysfunction. Human cerebral microvascular cells (hCMEC/D3) were treated with TNFα and IFNy, and the EVs were isolated and characterised. The effect of EVs on BBB transendothelial resistance (TEER) and leukocyte adhesion in hCMEC/D3 cells was measured by electric substrate cell-substrate impedance sensing and the flow-based T-cell adhesion assay. EV-induced molecular changes in recipient hCMEC/D3 cells were analysed by RT-qPCR and Western blotting. A stimulation of naïve hCMEC/D3 cells with small EVs (sEVs) reduced the TEER and increased the shear-resistant T-cell adhesion. The levels of microRNA-155, VCAM1 and ICAM1 were increased in sEV-treated hCMEC/D3 cells. Blocking the expression of VCAM1, but not of ICAM1, prevented sEV-mediated T-cell adhesion to brain endothelia. These results suggest that sEVs derived from inflamed BECs promote cerebrovascular dysfunction. These findings may provide new insights into the mechanisms involving neuroinflammatory disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Barriers in Health and Disease)
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Review
3D Printing of Thermo-Sensitive Drugs
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1524; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091524 - 21 Sep 2021
Viewed by 650
Abstract
Three-dimensional (3D) printing is among the rapidly evolving technologies with applications in many sectors. The pharmaceutical industry is no exception, and the approval of the first 3D-printed tablet (Spiratam®) marked a revolution in the field. Several studies reported the fabrication of [...] Read more.
Three-dimensional (3D) printing is among the rapidly evolving technologies with applications in many sectors. The pharmaceutical industry is no exception, and the approval of the first 3D-printed tablet (Spiratam®) marked a revolution in the field. Several studies reported the fabrication of different dosage forms using a range of 3D printing techniques. Thermosensitive drugs compose a considerable segment of available medications in the market requiring strict temperature control during processing to ensure their efficacy and safety. Heating involved in some of the 3D printing technologies raises concerns regarding the feasibility of the techniques for printing thermolabile drugs. Studies reported that semi-solid extrusion (SSE) is the commonly used printing technique to fabricate thermosensitive drugs. Digital light processing (DLP), binder jetting (BJ), and stereolithography (SLA) can also be used for the fabrication of thermosensitive drugs as they do not involve heating elements. Nonetheless, degradation of some drugs by light source used in the techniques was reported. Interestingly, fused deposition modelling (FDM) coupled with filling techniques offered protection against thermal degradation. Concepts such as selection of low melting point polymers, adjustment of printing parameters, and coupling of more than one printing technique were exploited in printing thermosensitive drugs. This systematic review presents challenges, 3DP procedures, and future directions of 3D printing of thermo-sensitive formulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Printed Pharmaceuticals in Future Healthcare)
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Article
Tablet Splitting in Elderly Patients with Dementia: The Case of Quetiapine
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1523; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091523 - 20 Sep 2021
Viewed by 650
Abstract
Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic approved for treating schizophrenia, bipolar depression, and mania but is frequently used in an off-label manner to control the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia in elderly patients with dementia. Due to the need to personalize doses for [...] Read more.
Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic approved for treating schizophrenia, bipolar depression, and mania but is frequently used in an off-label manner to control the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia in elderly patients with dementia. Due to the need to personalize doses for elderly patients with dementia, quetiapine tablet manipulation is widespread in hospital settings, long-term care facilities, and patient homes. The aim of this study was to assess the impact of the different splitting techniques on quetiapine fumarate tablets by analysing the obtained sub-divided tablets and to discuss compliance with the European Pharmacopoeia limits on whole and split tablets. Quetiapine fumarate tablets of two dose strengths were taken at random (in a number able to assure a power of 0.8 during statistical comparison) and were split with a kitchen knife or tablet cutter. The weight and the drug content were determined for each half tablet. The obtained data were compared to the European Pharmacopoeia limits. The differences between the different splitting techniques were statistically tested. Data showed that split tablets, independently of the dose strength and the technique employed, were not compliant with the European Pharmacopoeia specifications for both entire and subdivided tablets in terms of weight and content uniformity. Thus, such a common practice could have potential effects on treatment efficacy and toxicity, especially when also considering the fragility of the elderly target population in which polypharmacotherapy is very common. These results indicate a compelling need for flexible quetiapine formulations that can assure more accurate dose personalization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Development of Patient-Centric Dosage Form)
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Review
Selinexor and the Selective Inhibition of Nuclear Export: A New Perspective on the Treatment of Sarcomas and Other Solid and Non-Solid Tumors
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1522; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091522 - 20 Sep 2021
Viewed by 480
Abstract
Nucleocytoplasmic transport has been found dysregulated in many types of cancer and is often described as a poor prognostic factor. Specifically, Exportin-1 (XPO1) has been found overexpressed in many tumors and has become an attractive target in molecular oncology and therapeutics development. The [...] Read more.
Nucleocytoplasmic transport has been found dysregulated in many types of cancer and is often described as a poor prognostic factor. Specifically, Exportin-1 (XPO1) has been found overexpressed in many tumors and has become an attractive target in molecular oncology and therapeutics development. The selective inhibitor of nuclear export, Selinexor, is one of the most scientifically interesting drugs that targets XPO1 in clinical development. In this review, we summarized the most relevant preclinical and clinical results achieved for non-solid tumors, sarcomas, and other kind of solid tumors. Full article
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Article
Polylactide Nanocapsules Attenuate Adverse Cardiac Cellular Effects of Lyso-7, a Pan-PPAR Agonist/Anti-Inflammatory New Thiazolidinedione
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1521; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091521 - 20 Sep 2021
Viewed by 541
Abstract
Lyso-7 is a novel synthetic thiazolidinedione, which is a receptor (pan) agonist of PPAR α,β/δ,γ with anti-inflammatory activity. We investigated the cardiotoxicity of free Lyso-7 in vitro (4.5–450 nM), and Lyso-7 loaded in polylactic acid nanocapsules (NC) in vivo (Lyso-7-NC, 1.6 mg/kg). In [...] Read more.
Lyso-7 is a novel synthetic thiazolidinedione, which is a receptor (pan) agonist of PPAR α,β/δ,γ with anti-inflammatory activity. We investigated the cardiotoxicity of free Lyso-7 in vitro (4.5–450 nM), and Lyso-7 loaded in polylactic acid nanocapsules (NC) in vivo (Lyso-7-NC, 1.6 mg/kg). In previous work, we characterized Lyso-7-NC. We administered intravenously Lyso-7, Lyso-7-NC, control, and blank-NC once a day for seven days in mice. We assessed cell contraction and intracellular Ca2+ transients on single mice cardiomyocytes enzymatically isolated. Lyso-7 reduced cell contraction and accelerated relaxation while lowering diastolic Ca2+ and reducing Ca2+ transient amplitude. Lyso-7 also promoted abnormal ectopic diastolic Ca2+ events, which isoproterenol dramatically enhanced. Incorporation of Lyso-7 in NC attenuated drug effects on cell contraction and prevented its impact on relaxation, diastolic Ca2+, Ca2+ transient amplitude, Ca2+ transient decay kinetics, and promotion of diastolic Ca2+ events. Acute effects of Lyso-7 on cardiomyocytes in vitro at high concentrations (450 nM) were globally similar to those observed after repeated administration in vivo. In conclusion, we show evidence for off-target effects of Lyso-7, seen during acute exposure of cardiomyocytes to high concentrations and after repeated treatment in mice. Nano-encapsulation of Lyso-7 in polymeric NC attenuated the unwanted effects, particularly ectopic Ca2+ events known to support life-threatening arrhythmias favored by stress or exercise. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymeric Nanocapsules in Drug Delivery)
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Review
Non-Viral Gene Delivery Systems for Treatment of Myocardial Infarction: Targeting Strategies and Cardiac Cell Modulation
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1520; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091520 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 552
Abstract
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Conventional therapies involving surgery or pharmacological strategies have shown limited therapeutic effects due to a lack of cardiac tissue repair. Gene therapy has opened an avenue for the treatment of cardiac [...] Read more.
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Conventional therapies involving surgery or pharmacological strategies have shown limited therapeutic effects due to a lack of cardiac tissue repair. Gene therapy has opened an avenue for the treatment of cardiac diseases through manipulating the underlying gene mechanics. Several gene therapies for cardiac diseases have been assessed in clinical trials, while the clinical translation greatly depends on the delivery technologies. Non-viral vectors are attracting much attention due to their safety and facile production compared to viral vectors. In this review, we discuss the recent progress of non-viral gene therapies for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, with a particular focus on myocardial infarction (MI). Through a summary of delivery strategies with which to target cardiac tissue and different cardiac cells for MI treatment, this review aims to inspire new insights into the design/exploitation of non-viral delivery systems for gene cargos to promote cardiac repair/regeneration. Full article
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Article
Co-Spray Dried Nafamostat Mesylate with Lecithin and Mannitol as Respirable Microparticles for Targeted Pulmonary Delivery: Pharmacokinetics and Lung Distribution in Rats
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1519; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091519 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 606
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by a new strain of coronavirus called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is spreading rapidly worldwide. Nafamostat mesylate (NFM) suppresses transmembrane serine protease 2 and SARS-CoV-2 S protein-mediated fusion. In this study, pharmacokinetics and lung distribution [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by a new strain of coronavirus called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is spreading rapidly worldwide. Nafamostat mesylate (NFM) suppresses transmembrane serine protease 2 and SARS-CoV-2 S protein-mediated fusion. In this study, pharmacokinetics and lung distribution of NFM, administered via intravenous and intratracheal routes, were determined using high performance liquid chromatography analysis of blood plasma, lung lumen using bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, and lung tissue. Intratracheal administration had higher drug delivery and longer residual time in the lung lumen and tissue, which are the main sites of action, than intravenous administration. We confirmed the effect of lecithin as a stabilizer through an ex vivo stability test. Lecithin acts as an inhibitor of carboxylesterase and delays NFM decomposition. We prepared inhalable microparticles with NFM, lecithin, and mannitol via the co-spray method. The formulation prepared using an NFM:lecithin:mannitol ratio of 1:1:100 had a small particle size and excellent aerodynamic performance. Spray dried microparticles containing NFM, lecithin, and mannitol (1:1:100) had the longest residual time in the lung tissue. In conclusion, NFM-inhalable microparticles were prepared and confirmed to be delivered into the respiratory tract, such as lung lumen and lung tissue, through in vitro and in vivo evaluations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Formulations of Repurposed Drugs against COVID-19)
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Article
Mesoporous Calcium-Silicate Nanoparticles Loaded with Low-Dose Triton-100+Ag+ to Achieve Both Enhanced Antibacterial Properties and Low Cytotoxicity for Dentin Disinfection of Human Teeth
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1518; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091518 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 691
Abstract
Mesoporous calcium-silicate nanoparticles (MCSNs) are excellent biomaterials for controlled drug delivery and mineralization induction. In this study, MCSNs were loaded with low-dose silver ion (Ag+) and Triton X-100 (TX-100) as the M-AgTX to achieve both enhanced antibacterial properties and low cytotoxicity [...] Read more.
Mesoporous calcium-silicate nanoparticles (MCSNs) are excellent biomaterials for controlled drug delivery and mineralization induction. In this study, MCSNs were loaded with low-dose silver ion (Ag+) and Triton X-100 (TX-100) as the M-AgTX to achieve both enhanced antibacterial properties and low cytotoxicity for dentin disinfection. The physicochemical property, biocompatibility, infiltration ability into dentinal tubules, anti-bacterial ability against both planktonic Enterococcusfaecalis (E. faecalis) and its biofilm on dentin, effects on dentin microhardness and in vitro mineralization property were systematically investigated. Results confirmed that the MCSNs and M-AgTX nanoparticles showed typical morphology of mesoporous materials and exhibited sustained release of chemicals with an alkaline pH value over time. M-AgTX also exhibited excellent biocompatibility on MC3T3-E1 cells and could eliminate 100% planktonic E. faecalis after 48-h treatment. On dentin slices, it could enter dentinal tubules by ultrasonic activation and inhibit the growth of E. faecalis on dentin. M-AgTX could completely inactive 28-day E. faecalis biofilm. TEM confirmed the destruction of cell membrane integrity and Ag+ infiltration into bacteria by M-AgTX. Besides, dentin slices medicated with M-AgTX nanoparticles displayed an increased microhardness. After being immersed in SBF for 7 days, apatite crystals could be observed on the surface of the material tablets. M-AgTX could be developed into a new multifunctional intra-canal medication or bone defect filling material for infected bone defects due to its sustained release profile, low cytotoxicity, infiltration ability, enhanced anti-bacterial and mineralization features. Full article
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Article
Increased Bioavailability of β-Alanine by a Novel Controlled-Release Powder Blend Compared to a Slow-Release Tablet
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1517; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091517 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 637
Abstract
Background: β-Alanine is a sport supplement with increasing popularity due to its consistent ability to improve physical performance, with the downside of requiring several weeks of supplementation as imposed to the maximum daily and single dose tolerated without side effects (i.e., paresthesia). To [...] Read more.
Background: β-Alanine is a sport supplement with increasing popularity due to its consistent ability to improve physical performance, with the downside of requiring several weeks of supplementation as imposed to the maximum daily and single dose tolerated without side effects (i.e., paresthesia). To date, the only alternative to overcome this problem has been use of a sustained-release tablet, while powders are the most commonly used format to deliver several grams of amino acids in a single dose. In this study we assessed the bioavailability, pharmacokinetics and paresthesia effect of β-alanine after administration in a novel controlled-released powder blend (test) versus a sustained-release tablet (reference). Methods: Twelve subjects (25.6 ± 3.2 y, 50% female) participated in a randomized, single-blind, crossover study. Each participant was administered orally the test (β-alanine 8 g, l-histidine 300 mg, carnosine 100 mg) or the reference product (10 tablets to reach β-alanine 8 g, Zinc 20 mg) with a 1-week washout period. β-Alanine plasma concentrations (0–8 h) were determined by LC-MS/MS and model-independent pharmacokinetic analysis was carried out. Paresthesia intensity was evaluated using a Visual Analog Score (VAS) and the categorical Intensity Sensory Score (ISS). Results: The CMAX and AUC0 increased 1.6- and 2.1-fold (both p < 0.001) in the test product, respectively, which yielded 2.1-fold higher bioavailability; Ka decreased in the test (0.0199 ± 0.0107 min−1) versus the reference (0.0299 ± 0.0121 min−1) product (p = 0.0834) as well as V/F and Cl/F (both p < 0.001); MRT0→last increased in the test (143 ± 19 min) versus reference (128 ± 16 min) formulation (p = 0.0449); t1/2 remained similar (test: 63.5 ± 8.7 min, reference: 68.9 ± 9.8 min). Paresthesia EMAX increased 1.7-fold using the VAS (p = 0.086) and the ISS (p = 0.009). AUEC increased 1.9-fold with the VAS (p = 0.107) and the ISS (p = 0.019) reflecting scale intrinsic differences. Pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic analysis showed a clockwise hysteresis loop without prediction ability between CMAX, AUC0 and EMAX or AUEC. No side effects were reported (except paresthesia). Conclusions: The novel controlled-release powder blend shows 100% higher bioavailability of β-alanine, opening a new paradigm that shifts from chronic to short or mid-term supplementation strategies to increase carnosine stores in sports nutrition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Drug Delivery and Controlled Release)
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Article
Synthesis and Biochemical Evaluation of Baicalein Prodrugs
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1516; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091516 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 543
Abstract
Baicalein (5,6,7-trihydroxy-2-phenyl-4H-1-benzopyran-4-one), a flavonoid analog from Scutellaria baicalensis, possesses several pharmacological activities including antioxidant, antiproliferative, and anti-inflammatory activities. We previously reported that baicalein inhibits the thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP)/TSLP receptor (TSLPR) signaling pathways and can be used as an active ingredient in [...] Read more.
Baicalein (5,6,7-trihydroxy-2-phenyl-4H-1-benzopyran-4-one), a flavonoid analog from Scutellaria baicalensis, possesses several pharmacological activities including antioxidant, antiproliferative, and anti-inflammatory activities. We previously reported that baicalein inhibits the thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP)/TSLP receptor (TSLPR) signaling pathways and can be used as an active ingredient in the treatment of asthma and atopic dermatitis. However, baicalein is rapidly metabolized to baicalin and baicalein-6-O-glucuronide in vivo, which limits its preclinical and clinical use. In this study, we designed, synthesized, and evaluated baicalein prodrugs that protect the OH group at the 7-position of the A ring in baicalein with the amino acid carbamate functional group. Comprehensive in vitro and in vivo studies identified compound 2 as a baicalein prodrug candidate that improved the plasma exposure of baicalein in mouse animal studies. Our results demonstrated that this prodrug approach could be further adopted to discover oral baicalein prodrugs. Full article
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Article
Cellulose Nanofibers Improve the Performance of Retrograded Starch/Pectin Microparticles for Colon-Specific Delivery of 5-ASA
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1515; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091515 - 19 Sep 2021
Viewed by 618
Abstract
Cellulose nanofibers (CNF) were employed as the nanoreinforcement of a retrograded starch/pectin (RS/P) excipient to optimize its colon-specific properties. Although starch retrogradation ranged from 32 to 73%, CNF addition discretely disfavored the RS yield. This result agrees with the finding that in situ [...] Read more.
Cellulose nanofibers (CNF) were employed as the nanoreinforcement of a retrograded starch/pectin (RS/P) excipient to optimize its colon-specific properties. Although starch retrogradation ranged from 32 to 73%, CNF addition discretely disfavored the RS yield. This result agrees with the finding that in situ CNF reduces the presence of the RS crystallinity pattern. A thermal analysis revealed that the contribution of pectin improves the thermal stability of the RS/CNF mixture. Through a complete factorial design, it was possible to optimize the spray-drying conditions to obtain powders with high yield (57%) and low moisture content (1.2%). The powders observed by Field Emission Gum Scanning Electron Microscopy (FEG-SEM) had 1–10 µm and a circular shape. The developed methodology allowed us to obtain 5-aminosalicilic acid-loaded microparticles with high encapsulation efficiency (16–98%) and drug loading (1.97–26.63%). The presence of CNF in RS/P samples was responsible for decreasing the burst effect of release in simulated gastric and duodenal media, allowing the greatest mass of drug to be targeted to the colon. Considering that spray-drying is a scalable process, widely used by the pharmaceutical industry, the results obtained indicate the potential of these microparticles as raw material for obtaining other dosage forms to deliver 5-ASA to the distal parts of gastrointestinal tract, affected by inflammatory bowel disease. Full article
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Article
Exploring Drugs and Vaccines Associated with Altered Risks and Severity of COVID-19: A UK Biobank Cohort Study of All ATC Level-4 Drug Categories Reveals Repositioning Opportunities
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1514; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091514 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 679
Abstract
Effective therapies for COVID-19 are still lacking, and drug repositioning is a promising approach to address this problem. Here, we adopted a medical informatics approach to repositioning. We leveraged a large prospective cohort, the UK-Biobank (UKBB, N ~ 397,000), and studied associations of [...] Read more.
Effective therapies for COVID-19 are still lacking, and drug repositioning is a promising approach to address this problem. Here, we adopted a medical informatics approach to repositioning. We leveraged a large prospective cohort, the UK-Biobank (UKBB, N ~ 397,000), and studied associations of prior use of all level-4 ATC drug categories (N = 819, including vaccines) with COVID-19 diagnosis and severity. Effects of drugs on the risk of infection, disease severity, and mortality were investigated separately. Logistic regression was conducted, controlling for main confounders. We observed strong and highly consistent protective associations with statins. Many top-listed protective drugs were also cardiovascular medications, such as angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI), angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB), calcium channel blocker (CCB), and beta-blockers. Some other drugs showing protective associations included biguanides (metformin), estrogens, thyroid hormones, proton pump inhibitors, and testosterone-5-alpha reductase inhibitors, among others. We also observed protective associations by influenza, pneumococcal, and several other vaccines. Subgroup and interaction analyses were also conducted, which revealed differences in protective effects in various subgroups. For example, protective effects of flu/pneumococcal vaccines were weaker in obese individuals, while protection by statins was stronger in cardiovascular patients. To conclude, our analysis revealed many drug repositioning candidates, for example several cardiovascular medications. Further studies are required for validation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue In Silico Strategies for Prospective Drug Repositionings)
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Review
Functionalized Dendrimer Platforms as a New Forefront Arsenal Targeting SARS-CoV-2: An Opportunity
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1513; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091513 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 649
Abstract
The novel human coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) has caused a pandemic. There are currently several marketed vaccines and many in clinical trials targeting SARS-CoV-2. Another strategy is to repurpose approved drugs to decrease the burden of the COVID-19 (official [...] Read more.
The novel human coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) has caused a pandemic. There are currently several marketed vaccines and many in clinical trials targeting SARS-CoV-2. Another strategy is to repurpose approved drugs to decrease the burden of the COVID-19 (official name for the coronavirus disease) pandemic. as the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approved antiviral drugs and anti-inflammatory drugs to arrest the cytokine storm, inducing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Another view to solve these unprecedented challenges is to analyze the diverse nanotechnological approaches which are able to improve the COVID-19 pandemic. In this original minireview, as promising candidates we analyze the opportunity to develop biocompatible dendrimers as drugs themselves or as nanocarriers against COVID-19 disease. From the standpoint of COVID-19, we suggest developing dendrimers as shields against COVID-19 infection based on their capacity to be incorporated in several environments outside the patients and as important means to stop transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Dendritic Materials against Infectious Diseases)
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Article
Graphene Oxide and Graphene Quantum Dots as Delivery Systems of Cationic Porphyrins: Photo-Antiproliferative Activity Evaluation towards T24 Human Bladder Cancer Cells
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1512; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091512 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 658
Abstract
The development of new photodynamic therapy (PDT) agents designed for bladder cancer (BC) treatments is of utmost importance to prevent its recurrence and progression towards more invasive forms. Here, three different porphyrinic photosensitizers (PS) (TMPyP, Zn-TMPyP, and P1-C5) were non-covalently loaded [...] Read more.
The development of new photodynamic therapy (PDT) agents designed for bladder cancer (BC) treatments is of utmost importance to prevent its recurrence and progression towards more invasive forms. Here, three different porphyrinic photosensitizers (PS) (TMPyP, Zn-TMPyP, and P1-C5) were non-covalently loaded onto graphene oxide (GO) or graphene quantum dots (GQDs) in a one-step process. The cytotoxic effects of the free PS and of the corresponding hybrids were compared upon blue (BL) and red-light (RL) exposure on T24 human BC cells. In addition, intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) and singlet oxygen generation were measured. TMPyP and Zn-TMPyP showed higher efficiency under BL (IC50: 0.42 and 0.22 μm, respectively), while P1-C5 was more active under RL (IC50: 0.14 μm). In general, these PS could induce apoptotic cell death through lysosomes damage. The in vitro photosensitizing activity of the PS was not compromised after their immobilization onto graphene-based nanomaterials, with [email protected] being the most promising hybrid system under RL (IC50: 0.37 μg/mL). Overall, our data confirm that GO and GQDs may represent valid platforms for PS delivery, without altering their performance for PDT on BC cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug Delivery in Photodynamic Therapy (PDT))
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Article
Multifaced Role of Dual Herbal Principles Loaded-Lipid Nanocarriers in Providing High Therapeutic Efficacity
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1511; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091511 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 453
Abstract
Although many phytochemicals have been used in traditional medicine, there is a great need to refresh the health benefits and adjust the shortcomings of herbal medicine. In this research, two herbal principles (Diosgenin and Glycyrrhiza glabra extract) coopted in the Nanostructured Lipid Carriers [...] Read more.
Although many phytochemicals have been used in traditional medicine, there is a great need to refresh the health benefits and adjust the shortcomings of herbal medicine. In this research, two herbal principles (Diosgenin and Glycyrrhiza glabra extract) coopted in the Nanostructured Lipid Carriers have been developed for improving the most desirable properties of herbal medicine—antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions. The contribution of phytochemicals, vegetable oils and of lipid matrices has been highlighted by comparative study of size, stability, entrapment efficiency, morphological characteristics, and thermal behavior. According to the in vitro MTS and RTCA results, the dual herbal-NLCs were no cytotoxic toward endothelial cells at concentrations between 25 and 100 µg/mL. A rapid release of Glycyrrhiza glabra and a motivated delay of Diosgenin was detected by the in vitro release experiments. Dual herbal-NLCs showed an elevated ability to annihilate long-life cationic radicals (ABTS•+) and short-life oxygenated radicals (an inhibition of 63.4% ABTS•+, while the ability to capture radical oxygen species reached 96%). The production of pro-inflammatory cytokines was significantly inhibited by the newly herbals-NLC (up to 97.9% inhibition of TNF-α and 62.5% for IL-6). The study may open a new pharmacotherapy horizon; it provides a comprehensive basis for the use of herbal-NLC in the treatment of inflammatory diseases. Full article
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Article
Co-Injection of Sulfotyrosine Facilitates Retinal Uptake of Hyaluronic Acid Nanospheres Following Intravitreal Injection
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1510; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091510 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 505
Abstract
Gene and drug delivery to the retina is a critical therapeutic goal. While the majority of inherited forms of retinal degeneration affect the outer retina, specifically the photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium, effective targeted delivery to this region requires invasive subretinal delivery. Our [...] Read more.
Gene and drug delivery to the retina is a critical therapeutic goal. While the majority of inherited forms of retinal degeneration affect the outer retina, specifically the photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium, effective targeted delivery to this region requires invasive subretinal delivery. Our goal in this work was to evaluate two innovative approaches for increasing both the persistence of delivered nanospheres and their penetration into the outer retina while using the much less invasive intravitreal delivery method. We formulated novel hyaluronic acid nanospheres (HA-NS, 250 nm and 500 nm in diameter) conjugated to fluorescent reporters and delivered them intravitreally to the adult Balb/C mouse retina. They exhibited persistence in the vitreous and along the inner limiting membrane (ILM) for up to 30 days (longest timepoint examined) but little retinal penetration. We thus evaluated the ability of the small molecule, sulfotyrosine, to disrupt the ILM, and found that 3.2 µg/µL sulfotyrosine led to significant improvement in delivery to the outer retina following intravitreal injections without causing retinal inflammation, degeneration, or loss of function. Co-delivery of sulfotyrosine and HA-NS led to robust improvements in penetration of HA-NS into the retina and accumulation along the interface between the photoreceptors and the retinal pigment epithelium. These exciting findings suggest that sulfotyrosine and HA-NS may be an effective strategy for outer retinal targeting after intravitreal injection. Full article
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Perspective
Inhibition of Scavenger Receptor Class B Type 1 (SR-B1) Expression and Activity as a Potential Novel Target to Disrupt Cholesterol Availability in Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1509; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091509 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 619
Abstract
There have been several studies that have linked elevated scavenger receptor class b type 1 (SR-B1) expression and activity to the development and progression of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). SR-B1 facilitates the influx of cholesterol to the cell from lipoproteins in systemic circulation. [...] Read more.
There have been several studies that have linked elevated scavenger receptor class b type 1 (SR-B1) expression and activity to the development and progression of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). SR-B1 facilitates the influx of cholesterol to the cell from lipoproteins in systemic circulation. This influx of cholesterol may be important for many cellular functions, including the synthesis of androgens. Castration-resistant prostate cancer tumors can synthesize androgens de novo to supplement the loss of exogenous sources often induced by androgen deprivation therapy. Silencing of SR-B1 may impact the ability of prostate cancer cells, particularly those of the castration-resistant state, to maintain the intracellular supply of androgens by removing a supply of cholesterol. SR-B1 expression is elevated in CRPC models and has been linked to poor survival of patients. The overarching belief has been that cholesterol modulation, through either synthesis or uptake inhibition, will impact essential signaling processes, impeding the proliferation of prostate cancer. The reduction in cellular cholesterol availability can impede prostate cancer proliferation through both decreased steroid synthesis and steroid-independent mechanisms, providing a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of prostate cancer. In this article, we discuss and highlight the work on SR-B1 as a potential novel drug target for CRPC management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Pharmaceutical Sciences in Canada)
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Article
mPEG-PLGA Nanoparticles Labelled with Loaded or Conjugated Rhodamine-B for Potential Nose-to-Brain Delivery
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1508; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091508 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 491
Abstract
Nowdays, neurodegenerative diseases represent a great challenge from both the therapeutic and diagnostic points of view. Indeed, several physiological barriers of the body, including the blood brain barrier (BBB), nasal, dermal, and intestinal barriers, interpose between the development of new drugs and their [...] Read more.
Nowdays, neurodegenerative diseases represent a great challenge from both the therapeutic and diagnostic points of view. Indeed, several physiological barriers of the body, including the blood brain barrier (BBB), nasal, dermal, and intestinal barriers, interpose between the development of new drugs and their effective administration to reach the target organ or target cells at therapeutic concentrations. Currently, the nose-to-brain delivery with nanoformulations specifically designed for intranasal administration is a strategy widely investigated with the goal to reach the brain while bypassing the BBB. To produce nanosystems suitable to study both in vitro and/or in vivo cells trafficking for potential nose-to-brain delivery route, we prepared and characterized two types of fluorescent poly(ethylene glycol)-methyl-ether-block-poly(lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA–PEG) nanoparticles (PNPs), i.e., Rhodamine B (RhB) dye loaded- and grafted- PNPs, respectively. The latter were produced by blending into the PLGA–PEG matrix a RhB-labeled polyaspartamide/polylactide graft copolymer to ensure a stable fluorescence during the time of analysis. Photon correlation spectroscopy (PCS), UV-visible (UV-vis) spectroscopies, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), atomic force microscopy (AFM) were used to characterize the RhB-loaded and RhB-grafted PNPs. To assess their potential use for brain targeting, cytotoxicity tests were carried out on olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) and neuron-like differentiated PC12 cells. Both PNP types showed mean sizes suitable for nose-to-brain delivery (<200 nm, PDI < 0.3) and were not cytotoxic toward OECs in the concentration range tested, while a reduction in the viability on PC12 cells was found when higher concentrations of nanomedicines were used. Both the RhB-labelled NPs are suitable drug carrier models for exploring cellular trafficking in nose-to-brain delivery for short-time or long-term studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Lipid- and/or Polymer-Based Drug Delivery Systems)
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Article
Modulation of Colorectal Tumor Behavior via lncRNA TP53TG1-Lipidic Nanosystem
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1507; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091507 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 693
Abstract
Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are an emerging group of RNAs with a crucial role in cancer pathogenesis. In gastrointestinal cancers, TP53 target 1 (TP53TG1) is an epigenetically regulated lncRNA that represents a promising therapeutic target due to its tumor suppressor properties regulating the [...] Read more.
Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are an emerging group of RNAs with a crucial role in cancer pathogenesis. In gastrointestinal cancers, TP53 target 1 (TP53TG1) is an epigenetically regulated lncRNA that represents a promising therapeutic target due to its tumor suppressor properties regulating the p53-mediated DNA damage and the intracellular localization of the oncogenic YBX1 protein. However, to translate this finding into the clinic as a gene therapy, it is important to develop effective carriers able to deliver exogenous lncRNAs to the targeted cancer cells. Here, we propose the use of biocompatible sphingomyelin nanosystems comprising DOTAP (DSNs) to carry and deliver a plasmid vector encoding for TP53TG1 (pc(TP53TG1)-DSNs) to a colorectal cancer cell line (HCT-116). DSNs presented a high association capacity and convenient physicochemical properties. In addition, pc(TP53TG1)-DSNs showed anti-tumor activities in vitro, specifically a decrease in the proliferation rate, a diminished colony-forming capacity, and hampered migration and invasiveness of the treated cancer cells. Consequently, the proposed strategy displays a high potential as a therapeutic approach for colorectal cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-viral Gene Delivery Systems (Volume II))
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Article
Systemically Administered Homing Peptide Targets Dystrophic Lesions and Delivers Transforming Growth Factor-β (TGFβ) Inhibitor to Attenuate Murine Muscular Dystrophy Pathology
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1506; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091506 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 649
Abstract
Muscular dystrophy is a progressively worsening and lethal disease, where accumulation of functionality-impairing fibrosis plays a key pathogenic role. Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGFβ1) is a central signaling molecule in the development of fibrosis in muscular dystrophic humans and mice. Inhibition of TGFβ1 has [...] Read more.
Muscular dystrophy is a progressively worsening and lethal disease, where accumulation of functionality-impairing fibrosis plays a key pathogenic role. Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGFβ1) is a central signaling molecule in the development of fibrosis in muscular dystrophic humans and mice. Inhibition of TGFβ1 has proven beneficial in mouse models of muscular dystrophy, but the global strategies of TGFβ1 inhibition produce significant detrimental side effects. Here, we investigated whether murine muscular dystrophy lesion-specific inhibition of TGFβ1 signaling by the targeted delivery of therapeutic decorin (a natural TGFβ inhibitor) by a vascular homing peptide CAR (CARSKNKDC) would reduce skeletal muscle fibrosis and pathology and increase functional characteristics of skeletal muscle. We demonstrate that CAR peptide homes to dystrophic lesions with specificity in two muscular dystrophy models. Recombinant fusion protein consisting of CAR peptide and decorin homes selectively to sites of skeletal muscle damage in mdxDBA2/J and gamma-sarcoglycan deficient DBA2/J mice. This targeted delivery reduced TGFβ1 signaling as demonstrated by reduced nuclear pSMAD staining. Three weeks of targeted decorin treatment decreased both membrane permeability and fibrosis and improved skeletal muscle function in comparison to control treatments in the mdxD2 mice. These results show that selective delivery of decorin to the sites of skeletal muscle damage attenuates the progression of murine muscular dystrophy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Precision Delivery of Drugs and Imaging Agents with Peptides)
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Article
Optimisation of a Microfluidic Method for the Delivery of a Small Peptide
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1505; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091505 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 570
Abstract
Peptides hold promise as therapeutics, as they have high bioactivity and specificity, good aqueous solubility, and low toxicity. However, they typically suffer from short circulation half-lives in the body. To address this issue, here, we have developed a method for encapsulation of an [...] Read more.
Peptides hold promise as therapeutics, as they have high bioactivity and specificity, good aqueous solubility, and low toxicity. However, they typically suffer from short circulation half-lives in the body. To address this issue, here, we have developed a method for encapsulation of an innate-immune targeted hexapeptide into nanoparticles using safe non-toxic FDA-approved materials. Peptide-loaded nanoparticles were formulated using a two-stage microfluidic chip. Microfluidic-related factors (i.e., flow rate, organic solvent, theoretical drug loading, PLGA type, and concentration) that may potentially influence the nanoparticle properties were systematically investigated using dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy. The pharmacokinetic (PK) profile and biodistribution of the optimised nanoparticles were assessed in mice. Peptide-loaded lipid shell-PLGA core nanoparticles with designated size (~400 nm) and a sustained in vitro release profile were further characterized in vivo. In the form of nanoparticles, the elimination half-life of the encapsulated peptide was extended significantly compared with the peptide alone and resulted in a much higher distribution into the lung. These novel nanoparticles with lipid shells have considerable potential for increasing the circulation half-life and improving the biodistribution of therapeutic peptides to improve their clinical utility, including peptides aimed at treating lung-related diseases. Full article
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Article
A Recombinant Fusion Construct between Human Serum Albumin and NTPDase CD39 Allows Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Thrombotic Coating of Medical Devices
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1504; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091504 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 460
Abstract
Medical devices directly exposed to blood are commonly used to treat cardiovascular diseases. However, these devices are associated with inflammatory reactions leading to delayed healing, rejection of foreign material or device-associated thrombus formation. We developed a novel recombinant fusion protein as a new [...] Read more.
Medical devices directly exposed to blood are commonly used to treat cardiovascular diseases. However, these devices are associated with inflammatory reactions leading to delayed healing, rejection of foreign material or device-associated thrombus formation. We developed a novel recombinant fusion protein as a new biocompatible coating strategy for medical devices with direct blood contact. We genetically fused human serum albumin (HSA) with ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase-1 (CD39), a promising anti-thrombotic and anti-inflammatory drug candidate. The HSA-CD39 fusion protein is highly functional in degrading ATP and ADP, major pro-inflammatory reagents and platelet agonists. Their enzymatic properties result in the generation of AMP, which is further degraded by CD73 to adenosine, an anti-inflammatory and anti-platelet reagent. HSA-CD39 is functional after lyophilisation, coating and storage of coated materials for up to 8 weeks. HSA-CD39 coating shows promising and stable functionality even after sterilisation and does not hinder endothelialisation of primary human endothelial cells. It shows a high level of haemocompatibility and diminished blood cell adhesion when coated on nitinol stents or polyvinylchloride tubes. In conclusion, we developed a new recombinant fusion protein combining HSA and CD39, and demonstrated that it has potential to reduce thrombotic and inflammatory complications often associated with medical devices directly exposed to blood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Albumin-Based Drug Delivery Systems)
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Article
Hyaluronic Acid-Binding, Anionic, Nanoparticles Inhibit ECM Degradation and Restore Compressive Stiffness in Aggrecan-Depleted Articular Cartilage Explants
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1503; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091503 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 404
Abstract
Joint trauma results in the production of inflammatory cytokines that stimulate the secretion of catabolic enzymes, which degrade articular cartilage. Molecular fragments of the degraded articular cartilage further stimulate inflammatory cytokine production, with this process eventually resulting in post-traumatic osteoarthritis (PTOA). The loss [...] Read more.
Joint trauma results in the production of inflammatory cytokines that stimulate the secretion of catabolic enzymes, which degrade articular cartilage. Molecular fragments of the degraded articular cartilage further stimulate inflammatory cytokine production, with this process eventually resulting in post-traumatic osteoarthritis (PTOA). The loss of matrix component aggrecan occurs early in the progression of PTOA and results in the loss of compressive stiffness in articular cartilage. Aggrecan is highly sulfated, associates with hyaluronic acid (HA), and supports the compressive stiffness in cartilage. Presented here, we conjugated the HA-binding peptide GAHWQFNALTVRGSG (GAH) to anionic nanoparticles (hNPs). Nanoparticles conjugated with roughly 19 GAH peptides, termed 19 GAH-hNP, bound to HA in solution and increased the dynamic viscosity by 94.1% compared to an HA solution treated with unconjugated hNPs. Moreover, treating aggrecan-depleted (AD) cartilage explants with 0.10 mg of 19 GAH-hNP restored the cartilage compressive stiffness to healthy levels six days after a single nanoparticle treatment. Treatment of AD cartilage with 0.10 mg of 19 GAH-hNP inhibited the degradation of articular cartilage. Treated AD cartilage had 409% more collagen type II and 598% more GAG content than untreated-AD explants. The 19 GAH-hNP therapeutic slowed ECM degradation in AD cartilage explants, restored the compressive stiffness of damaged cartilage, and showed promise as a localized treatment for PTOA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Therapeutics: From Synthesis to Biomedical Applications)
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Article
Comparative In Vitro Evaluation of Commercial Periodontal Gels on Antibacterial, Biocompatibility and Wound Healing Ability
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1502; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091502 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 645
Abstract
In the last years, several studies testing commercial periodontal gels that contain chlorhexidine (CHX) or other antibacterial agents, have raised concerns regarding their cytotoxicity in periodontal tissues. We aimed at comparing the biocompatibility but also the efficacy as regards to the antibacterial and [...] Read more.
In the last years, several studies testing commercial periodontal gels that contain chlorhexidine (CHX) or other antibacterial agents, have raised concerns regarding their cytotoxicity in periodontal tissues. We aimed at comparing the biocompatibility but also the efficacy as regards to the antibacterial and wound healing ability of different commercial periodontal gels. In vitro human gingival fibroblasts (GF) and a 3D model of human tissue equivalents of gingiva (GTE) were used under inflammatory conditions to evaluate wound closure, cytotoxicity and gene expression. Antibacterial effects were also investigated on Porphyromonas gingivalis growth, viability and gingipain activity. In GF and in the bacterial study, we found cytotoxic effects on GF and a high inhibition on bacterial growth rate in gels containing CHX, asiaticoside, enoxolone, cetylpyridinium chloride, propolis and eugenol. Of the two gels that were non-cytotoxic, Syntoss Biogel (containing chondrontin sulfate) and Emdogain (EMD, containing amelogenin and propylene glycol alginate), EMD showed the best wound closure, with no effect on P. gingivalis growth but decreased gingipain activity. On the other hand, Syntoss Biogel reduced viability and gingipain activity of P. gingivalis, but lack wound healing capacity. In the 3D GTE, Syntoss Biogel and EMD showed a good biocompatibility. Among all the tested gels, formulations containing CHX, asiaticoside, enoxolone, cetylpyridinium chloride, propolis and eugenol showed high antibacterial effect but also showed high cytotoxicity in eukaryotic cells. EMD was the one with the best biocompatibility and wound healing ability at the conditions tested. Full article
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Article
Surface-Modified Multifunctional Thymol-Loaded Biodegradable Nanoparticles for Topical Acne Treatment
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1501; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091501 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 697
Abstract
The present work is focused on the development of novel surface-functionalized poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) nanoparticles loaded with thymol (TH-NPs) for topical administration enhancing thymol anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and wound healing activities against acne. TH-NPs were prepared by solvent evaporation method using different surface functionalization strategies [...] Read more.
The present work is focused on the development of novel surface-functionalized poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) nanoparticles loaded with thymol (TH-NPs) for topical administration enhancing thymol anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and wound healing activities against acne. TH-NPs were prepared by solvent evaporation method using different surface functionalization strategies and obtaining suitable physicochemical parameters and a good short-term stability at 4 °C. Moreover, TH-NPs skin penetration and antioxidant activity were assessed in ex vivo pig skin models. Skin penetration of TH-NPs followed the follicular route, independently of the surface charge and they were able to enhance antioxidant capacity. Furthermore, antimicrobial activity against Cutibacterium acnes was evaluated in vitro by the suspension test showing improved antibacterial performance. Using human keratinocyte cells (HaCat), cytotoxicity, cellular uptake, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and wound healing activities were studied. TH-NPs were non-toxic and efficiently internalized inside the cells. In addition, TH-NPs displayed significant anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and wound healing activities, which were highly influenced by TH-NPs surface modifications. Moreover, a synergic activity between TH-NPs and their surface functionalization was demonstrated. To conclude, surface-modified TH-NPs had proven to be suitable to be used as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and wound healing agents, constituting a promising therapy for treating acne infection and associated inflammation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Controlled Release of Nanostructured Drug Systems)
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Review
Iterative Upgrading of Small Molecular Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors for EGFR Mutation in NSCLC: Necessity and Perspective
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1500; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091500 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 742
Abstract
Molecular targeted therapy has been reported to have fewer adverse effects, and offer a more convenient route of administration, compared with conventional chemotherapy. With the development of sequencing technology, and research on the molecular biology of lung cancer, especially whole-genome information on non-small [...] Read more.
Molecular targeted therapy has been reported to have fewer adverse effects, and offer a more convenient route of administration, compared with conventional chemotherapy. With the development of sequencing technology, and research on the molecular biology of lung cancer, especially whole-genome information on non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), various therapeutic targets have been unveiled. Among the NSCLC-driving gene mutations, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations are the most common, and approximately 10% of Caucasian, and more than 50% of Asian, NSCLC patients have been found to have sensitive EGFR mutations. A variety of targeted therapeutic agents for EGFR mutations have been approved for clinical applications, or are undergoing clinical trials around the world. This review focuses on: the indications of approved small molecular kinase inhibitors for EGFR mutation-positive NSCLC; the mechanisms of drug resistance and the corresponding therapeutic strategies; the principles of reasonable and precision molecular structure; and the drug development discoveries of next-generation inhibitors for EGFR. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Protein Kinase Inhibitors for Targeted Anticancer Therapies)
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Article
Indocyanine Green-Camptothecin Co-Loaded Perfluorocarbon Double-Layer Nanocomposite: A Versatile Nanotheranostics for Photochemotherapy and FDOT Diagnosis of Breast Cancer
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1499; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091499 - 17 Sep 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
Breast cancer remains the most frequently diagnosed cancer and is the leading cause of neoplastic disease burden for females worldwide, suggesting that effective therapeutic and/or diagnostic strategies are still urgently needed. In this study, a type of indocyanine green (ICG) and camptothecin (CPT) [...] Read more.
Breast cancer remains the most frequently diagnosed cancer and is the leading cause of neoplastic disease burden for females worldwide, suggesting that effective therapeutic and/or diagnostic strategies are still urgently needed. In this study, a type of indocyanine green (ICG) and camptothecin (CPT) co-loaded perfluorocarbon double-layer nanocomposite named ICPNC was developed for detection and photochemotherapy of breast cancer. The ICPNCs were designed to be surface modifiable for on-demand cell targeting and can serve as contrast agents for fluorescence diffuse optical tomography (FDOT). Upon near infrared (NIR) irradiation, the ICPNCs can generate a significantly increased production of singlet oxygen compared to free ICG, and offer a comparable cytotoxicity with reduced chemo-drug dosage. Based on the results of animal study, we further demonstrated that the ICPNCs ([ICG]/[CPT] = 40-/7.5-μM) in association with 1-min NIR irradiation (808 nm, 6 W/cm2) can provide an exceptional anticancer effect to the MDA-MB-231 tumor-bearing mice whereby the tumor size was significantly reduced by 80% with neither organ damage nor systemic toxicity after a 21-day treatment. Given a number of aforementioned merits, we anticipate that the developed ICPNC is a versatile theranostic nanoagent which is highly promising to be used in the clinic. Full article
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Article
Investigating the Central Nervous System Disposition of Actinomycin D: Implementation and Evaluation of Cerebral Microdialysis and Brain Tissue Measurements Supported by UPLC-MS/MS Quantification
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(9), 1498; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics13091498 - 17 Sep 2021
Viewed by 897
Abstract
Actinomycin D is a potent cytotoxic drug against pediatric (and other) tumors that is thought to barely cross the blood–brain barrier. To evaluate its potential applicability for the treatment of patients with central nervous system (CNS) tumors, we established a cerebral microdialysis model [...] Read more.
Actinomycin D is a potent cytotoxic drug against pediatric (and other) tumors that is thought to barely cross the blood–brain barrier. To evaluate its potential applicability for the treatment of patients with central nervous system (CNS) tumors, we established a cerebral microdialysis model in freely moving mice and investigated its CNS disposition by quantifying actinomycin D in cerebral microdialysate, brain tissue homogenate, and plasma. For this purpose, we developed and validated an ultraperformance liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry assay suitable for ultra-sensitive quantification of actinomycin D in the pertinent biological matrices in micro-samples of only 20 µL, with a lower limit of quantification of 0.05 ng/mL. In parallel, we confirmed actinomycin D as a substrate of P-glycoprotein (P-gp) in in vitro experiments. Two hours after intravenous administration of 0.5 mg/kg, actinomycin D reached total brain tissue concentrations of 4.1 ± 0.7 ng/g corresponding to a brain-to-plasma ratio of 0.18 ± 0.03, while it was not detectable in intracerebral microdialysate. This tissue concentration exceeds the concentrations of actinomycin D that have been shown to be effective in in vitro experiments. Elimination of the drug from brain tissue was substantially slower than from plasma, as shown in a brain-to-plasma ratio of approximately 0.53 after 22 h. Because actinomycin D reached potentially effective concentrations in brain tissue in our experiments, the drug should be further investigated as a therapeutic agent in potentially susceptible CNS malignancies, such as ependymoma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantification of Therapeutic Peptides by LC-MS)
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