Design of liposomal nanocarriers with a potential for combined dexamethasone and bevacizumab delivery to the eye

Umer Farooq, Niall J O'Reilly, Zubair Ahmed, Paolo Gasco, Thakur Raghu Raj Singh, Gautam Behl, Laurence Fitzhenry, Peter McLoughlin

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Clinicians face numerous challenges when delivering medications to the eyes topically because of physiological barriers, that can inhibit the complete dose from getting to the intended location. Due to their small size, the ability to deliver drugs of different polarities simultaneously, and their biocompatibility, liposomes hold great promise for ocular drug delivery. This study aimed to develop and characterise a dual loaded liposome formulation encapsulating Bevacizumab (BEV) and Dexamethasone (DEX) that possessed the physicochemical attributes suitable for topical ocular delivery. Liposomes were prepared by using thin film hydration followed by extrusion, and the formulations were optimised using a design of experiments approach. Physicochemical characterisation along with cytocompatibility and bioactivity of the formulations were assessed. Liposomes were successfully prepared with a particle size of 139 ± 2 nm, PDI 0.03 ± 0.01 and zeta potential -2 ± 0.7 mV for the optimised formulation. BEV and DEX were successfully encapsulated into the liposomes with an encapsulation efficiency of 97 ± 0.5 % and 26 ± 0.5 %, respectively. A sustained release of BEV was observed from the liposomes and the bioactivity of the formulation was confirmed using a wound healing assay. In summary, a potential topical eye drop drug delivery system, which can co-load DEX and BEV was developed and characterised for its potential to be used in ocular drug delivery.
Original languageEnglish
Article number123958
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmaceutics
Early online date06 Mar 2024
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2024


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