Ultra-long-acting tunable biodegradable and removable controlled release implants for drug delivery

Nat Commun. 2019 Sep 20;10(1):4324. doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-12141-5.


Here we report an ultra-long-acting tunable, biodegradable, and removable polymer-based delivery system that offers sustained drug delivery for up to one year for HIV treatment or prophylaxis. This robust formulation offers the ability to integrate multiple drugs in a single injection, which is particularly important to address the potential for drug resistance with monotherapy. Six antiretroviral drugs were selected based on their solubility in N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone and relevance as a combination therapy for HIV treatment or prevention. All drugs released with concentrations above their protein-adjusted inhibitory concentration and retained their physical and chemical properties within the formulation and upon release. The versatility of this formulation to integrate multiple drugs and provide sustained plasma concentrations from several weeks to up to one year, combined with its ability to be removed to terminate the treatment if necessary, makes it attractive as a drug delivery platform technology for a wide range of applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Retroviral Agents / pharmacokinetics
  • Biodegradable Plastics / chemistry*
  • Chemistry, Pharmaceutical
  • Delayed-Action Preparations / chemistry*
  • Delayed-Action Preparations / pharmacology
  • Drug Delivery Systems / methods*
  • Drug Liberation*
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Kinetics
  • Materials Testing
  • Polymers / metabolism*
  • Pyrrolidinones
  • Rheology
  • Solubility


  • Anti-Retroviral Agents
  • Biodegradable Plastics
  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Polymers
  • Pyrrolidinones
  • N-methylpyrrolidone