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Open Access Nano Express

Preparation and evaluation of novel mixed micelles as nanocarriers for intravenous delivery of propofol

Xinru Li, Yanhui Zhang, Yating Fan, Yanxia Zhou, Xiaoning Wang, Chao Fan, Yan Liu* and Qiang Zhang*

Author Affiliations

Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Peking University, Xueyuan Road 38, Haidian District, Beijing 100191, People's Republic of China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:275  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-275

Published: 31 March 2011


Novel mixed polymeric micelles formed from biocompatible polymers, poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactide) (mPEG-PLA) and polyoxyethylene-660-12-hydroxy stearate (Solutol HS15), were fabricated and used as a nanocarrier for solubilizing poorly soluble anesthetic drug propofol. The solubilization of propofol by the mixed micelles was more efficient than those made of mPEG-PLA alone. Micelles with the optimized composition of mPEG-PLA/Solutol HS15/propofol = 10/1/5 by weight had particle size of about 101 nm with narrow distribution (polydispersity index of about 0.12). Stability analysis of the mixed micelles in bovine serum albumin (BSA) solution indicated that the diblock copolymer mPEG efficiently protected the BSA adsorption on the mixed micelles because the hydrophobic groups of the copolymer were efficiently screened by mPEG, and propofol-loaded mixed micelles were stable upon storage for at least 6 months. The content of free propofol in the aqueous phase for mixed micelles was lower by 74% than that for the commercial lipid emulsion. No significant differences in times to unconsciousness and recovery of righting reflex were observed between mixed micelles and commercial lipid formulation. The pharmacological effect may serve as pharmaceutical nanocarriers with improved solubilization capacity for poorly soluble drugs.