The effects of the process variables, pH of aqueous phase, rate of addition of organic, polymeric, drug-containing phase to aqueous phase, organic:aqueous phase volume ratio and aqueous phase temperature on the entrapment of propranolol hydrochloride in ethylcellulose (N4) microspheres prepared by the solvent evaporation method were examined using a factorial design. The observed range of drug entrapment was 1.43 +/- 0.02%w/w (pH 6, 25 degrees C, phase volume ratio 1:10, fast rate of addition) to 16.63 +/- 0.92%w/w (pH 9, 33 degrees C, phase volume ratio 1:10, slow rate of addition) which corresponded to mean entrapment efficiencies of 2.86 and 33.26, respectively. Increased pH, increased temperature and decreased rate of addition significantly enhanced entrapment efficiency. However, organic:aqueous phase volume ratio did not significantly affect drug entrapment. Statistical interactions were observed between pH and rate of addition, pH and temperature, and temperature and rate of addition. The observed interactions involving pH are suggested to be due to the abilities of increased temperature and slow rate of addition to sufficiently enhance the solubility of dichloromethane in the aqueous phase, which at pH 9, but not pH 6, allows partial polymer precipitation prior to drug partitioning into the aqueous phase. The interaction between temperature and rate of addition is due to the relative lack of effect of increased temperature on drug entrapment following slow rate of addition of the organic phase. In comparison to the effects of pH on drug entrapment, the contributions of the other physical factors examined were limited.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||International Journal of Pharmaceutics|
|Publication status||Published - 1996|