Preparation of SLN-containing Thermoresponsive In-situ Forming Gel as a Controlled Nanoparticle Delivery System and Investigating its Rheological, Thermal and Erosion Behavior

Document Type : Research article


1 Department of Pharmaceutics and Nanotechnology, School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

2 Protein Technology Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Various nanoparticles have been investigated as novel drug delivery systems, including solid lipid nanoparticles (SLNs). Due to their rapid clearance from systemic circulation, nanoparticles do not provide sustained action in most cases. Different strategies have been employed to overcome this problem. In this direction, the present study introduces erodible in-situ forming gel systems as potential vehicles for prolonged release of SLNs.
SLNs were prepared by solidification of an oil-in-water microemulsion containing stearic acid, surfactants and co-surfactants. Nanoparticles were then dispersed in a thermosensitive Poloxamer 407 aqueous solution (sol) at 4°C and their effects on gel forming ability, sol-gel transition and rheological behavior of the system were investigated over 5-50°C.Thermal behavior of the system was investigated by differential scanning calorimetry too. Erosion rate of the gel in the presence and absence of SLN was measured by gravimetric method. Integrity of SLNs in the system was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and particle size analysis.
SLN showed particle size and zeta potential of 130 ± 1.39 nm and - 44 ± 2.1 mV respectively. Particle size analysis and SEM studies after gel erosion revealed presence of intact SLN in the hydrogel. SLN reduced erosion rate of Poloxamer gel and increased its sol-gel transition temperature from 26 to 29°C. However, gelling kinetic did not change significantly after addition of SLN. Damping factor Present results indicate potential of sol-gel systems for controlled nanoparticle delivery and show that SLN affects properties of the system.


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