Indexed on: 05 Apr '08Published on: 05 Apr '08Published in: Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B: Applied Biomaterials
Electrospraying is a novel technique for the generation of micro/nanospheres for biomedical applications. Apart from being a high yield technique; electrospraying has an added advantage of not making use of an external dispersion/emulsion phase which often involves ingredients that are undesirable for biomedical applications. In this study, we report the use of electrospraying for the synthesis of chitosan micro/nanospheres. The focus was to optimize the fabrication parameters involved in electrospraying for reproducible synthesis of chitosan based micro/nanospheres and to study their potential as delivery vehicles for bioactive agents. The influence of the following was studied (i) electrospraying voltage, (ii) needle gauge, (iii) concentration of chitosan solution, (iv) concentration of acetic acid solution, and (v) electrospraying distance. SEM analysis demonstrated that microspheres of less than 1 mum were obtained when chitosan concentration was 2% dissolved in 90% acetic acid. The working distance and needle gauge that yielded favorable results were 7 cm and 26 g, respectively. Average particle size of ampicillin loaded chitosan micro/nanospheres was 520 nm with zeta potential of +28.2 mV and encapsulation efficiency of 80.4%. The particles were characterized for drug release kinetics and results demonstrated an initial burst release followed by a sustained release over a period of 120 h. Further, antibacterial activity of drug loaded micro/nanospheres demonstrated that the encapsulated drug was in its active form postexposure to high voltage during electrospraying. This study indicates that electrospraying is a facile technique for the synthesis of chitosan micro/nanospheres for drug delivery applications.