Entrapment of 5-fluorouracil into PLGA matrices using supercritical antisolvent processes
Objectives Two different supercritical antisolvent processes were performed to co-precipitate 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and poly(lactide-co-glycolide) simultaneously. 5-FU is a hydrophilic antitumor agent, and is more effective when administered at a lower dose for a longer period of time. Methods Controlled-release polymeric systems of 5-FU were produced, and morphology, thermal behavior, in-vitro release and cytotoxicity of microparticles were analysed. Key findings Dissolution studies showed that 33% of drug was released in 21 days, which represents a long-lasting profile. To evaluate the efficacy of the released drug on cancer cells, the MTT assay cytotoxicity test was performed using human lung carcinoma A549 cell lines. There was no significant difference between the cell inhibition rates of the released drug and unprocessed 5-FU at the same drug concentration level. IC50 values were 69.12 mg/ml for unprocessed 5-FU and 68.71 mg/ml for the released drug. Conclusions Application of supercritical processing for co-precipitation of 5-FU and PLGA provided mild and non-aqueous conditions, so the hydrophilic drug incorporated in the polymer had good stability during the process.