Pulmonary drug delivery by powder aerosols

J Control Release. 2014 Nov 10;193:228-40. doi: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2014.04.055. Epub 2014 May 9.


The efficacy of pharmaceutical aerosols relates to its deposition in the clinically relevant regions of the lungs, which can be assessed by in vivo lung deposition studies. Dry powder formulations are popular as devices are portable and aerosolisation does not require a propellant. Over the years, key advancements in dry powder formulation, device design and our understanding on the mechanics of inhaled pharmaceutical aerosol have opened up new opportunities in treatment of diseases through pulmonary drug delivery. This review covers these advancements and future directions for inhaled dry powder aerosols.

Keywords: Dry powder formulation; Dry powder inhaler; Lung deposition; Pharmaceutical aerosol; Pulmonary drug delivery; SPECT imaging.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aerosols
  • Animals
  • Drug Delivery Systems* / instrumentation
  • Drug Delivery Systems* / methods
  • Dry Powder Inhalers*
  • Equipment Design
  • Humans
  • Insulin / administration & dosage
  • Insulin / pharmacokinetics
  • Lung / drug effects*
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Particle Size
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / administration & dosage*
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / metabolism
  • Powders
  • Static Electricity
  • Surface Properties
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Aerosols
  • Insulin
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations
  • Powders