NSTI Nanotech 2009

Microfluidic One-Step Synthesis Of Hybrid Lipid-Polymeric Nanoparticles For Drug Delivery Applications

P.M. Valencia, P.A. Basto, L. Zhang, R. Langer, O.C. Farokhzad, R. Karnik
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US

Keywords: nanoparticle, self-assembly, hydrodynamic flow focusing


The development of smart targeted nanoparticles (NPs) that can deliver drugs at a sustained rate directly to specific cells may provide better efficacy and lower toxicity for treating many diseases. Polymeric NPs as well as liposomes represent two of the dominant classes of nanovehicles able to encapsulate and deliver therapeutic agents. Hybrid lipid-polymeric NPs combine the desirable characteristics of polymeric NPs and liposomes such as high drug encapsulation yield, slow drug release, and high serum stability. Here, we report the use of rapid microfluidic mixing using hydrodynamic flow focusing in junction with passive mixing structures to control self-assembly of hybrid lipid-polymeric NPs. Self-assembly occurs in one step through nanoprecipitation, a process that involves dilution of a block copolymer from a solvent to an anti-solvent resulting in the precipitation of NPs. We demonstrated that through the rapid mixing of precursors (i.e. polymer in organic solvent) with anti-solvent (i.e. lipid in water), highly stable particles can be synthesized with controllable size and size distribution.
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