Encapsulation of PI3K Inhibitor LY294002 within Polymer Nanoparticles Using Ion Pairing Flash Nanoprecipitation
Flash nanoprecipitation (FNP) is a turbulent mixing process capable of reproducibly producing polymer nanoparticles loaded with active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). The nanoparticles produced with this method consist of a hydrophobic core surrounded by a hydrophilic corona. FNP produces nanoparticles with very high loading levels of nonionic hydrophobic APIs. However, hydrophobic compounds with ionizable groups are not as efficiently incorporated. To overcome this, ion pairing agents (IPs) can be incorporated into the FNP formulation to produce highly hydrophobic drug salts that efficiently precipitate during mixing. We demonstrate the encapsulation of the PI3K inhibitor, LY294002, within poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly(D,L lactic acid) nanoparticles. We investigated how incorporating two hydrophobic IPs (palmitic acid (PA) and hexadecylphosphonic acid (HDPA)) during the FNP process affected the LY294002 loading and size of the resulting nanoparticles. The effect of organic solvent choice on the synthesis process was also examined. While the presence of either hydrophobic IP effectively increased the encapsulation of LY294002 during FNP, HDPA resulted in well-defined colloidally stable particles, while the PA resulted in ill-defined aggregates. The incorporation of hydrophobic IPs with FNP opens the door for the intravenous administration of APIs that were previously deemed unusable due to their hydrophobic nature.