Poly(vinyl alcohol) hydrogels as hydrophilic matrices for the release of lipophilic drugs loaded in PLGA nanoparticles

J Mater Sci Mater Med. 2002 Jan;13(1):29-32. doi: 10.1023/a:1013674200141.


Poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) hydrogels prepared by a freeze-thawing procedure were evaluated as matrices for the release of water-insoluble drugs such as dexamethasone. As it is impossible to directly entrap a lipophilic drug into a hydrophilic matrix, a novel mechanism has been designed based on producing biodegradable nanoparticles loaded with the drug, that could then be entrapped into the hydrogels. Nanoparticles were prepared by a solvent evaporation technique using a biodegradable copolymer of poly(lactic acid)-poly(glycolic acid) (PLGA). The effects of several processing parameters on particle properties were investigated. The drug release from free nanoparticles was compared to that from the nanoparticles entrapped into the PVA matrices. It was observed that the release profile of the drug is not significantly affected by the PVA matrix. A correlation was found between the amount of drug released and the PVA concentration in the hydrogels: the percentage of drug released, as a function of time, decreased by increasing PVA concentration, indicating that PVA concentration can be used as a tool in modulating the release of the drug.